Title: Waiting for the Flood
Author: Alexis Hall
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Pages/Word Count: 106 Pages
At a Glance: Waiting for the Flood is a really lovely piece of writing.
Reviewed By: Jules
Blurb: People come as well as go.
Twelve years ago, Edwin Tully came to Oxford and fell in love with a boy named Marius. He was brilliant. An artist. It was going to be forever.
Two years ago, it ended.
Now Edwin lives alone in the house they used to share. He tends to damaged books and faded memories, trying to build a future from the fragments of the past.
Then the weather turns, and the river spills into Edwin’s quiet world, bringing with it Adam Dacre from the Environment Agency. An unlikely knight, this stranger with roughened hands and worn wellingtons, but he offers Edwin the hope of something he thought he would never have again.
As the two men grow closer in their struggle against the rising waters, Edwin learns he can’t protect himself from everything—and sometimes he doesn’t need to try.
Review: There is no way that my words are going to do Alexis Hall’s words justice, but I’ll give it a shot…
Waiting for the Flood is a really lovely piece of writing. I can’t speak to the author’s style in general, as this was the first work of his that I have read, but this novella was gorgeously poetic. Every word choice and sentence structure felt deliberate yet effortless, and the whole thing flowed beautifully. It took me a full chapter to get into it and truly hear the voice – but, once I got into the cadence of the story, I couldn’t put it down.
While also a wonderful tale of second chances, letting go, and new love, Waiting for the Flood is mainly about Edwin’s resurrection, so to speak. Deeply hurt when his previous partner left him, Edwin has spent the last two years simply existing. He has basically cut off communications with his friends from when he and Marius were a couple; and spends all of his time restoring old books, correspondence, and ephemera, which is his hobby as well as his job. He seems resigned to being alone – in fact, doesn’t feel he’s worthy of anyone’s attention – so when a sweet, attractive, civil engineer falls into his life, Edwin almost sabotages things before they have a chance to take off.
Adam is such a kind, gentle, wonderful man. Edwin feels that he’s too good to be true. Adam listens, really listens, to Edwin, appearing to hang on his every word. This is a huge thing to Edwin, a life-long stutterer who has spent his entire life feeling as though people were so hung up on his trying to get his words out that they didn’t ever truly hear what he was actually saying. The exchanges between these two characters are smart, witty, and heart-warming. I giggled and swooned several times throughout the awkward courtship.
It was beautiful to watch Edwin come around and open himself up to the possibility of love. It was beautiful when he decided to trust Adam with his heart (and Adam is so worthy of that trust). It was beautiful to see the rebirth of Edwin, with the patient guidance of Adam, through the backdrop of the flood.
The story can be enjoyed on many levels. It is deeply philosophical at times, but can also be enjoyed as a lighter, romantic read. Try this one out, the next time you’re looking for a lazy Sunday read, perhaps. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did.
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