The Valley And The Flood by Rebecca Mahoney

*Spoiler free*

Thank you so much to Razorbill and NetGalley for the e-ARC!

Rose Colter is almost home, but she can’t go back there yet. When her car breaks down in the Nevada desert, the silence of the night is broken by a radio broadcast of a voicemail message from her best friend, Gaby. A message Rose has listened to countless times over the past year. The last one Gaby left before she died. So Rose follows the lights from the closest radio tower to Lotus Valley, a small town where prophets are a dime a dozen, secrets lurk in every shadow, and the diner pie is legendary. And according to Cassie Cyrene, the town’s third most accurate prophet, they’ve been waiting for her. Because Rose’s arrival is part of a looming prophecy, one that says a flood will destroy Lotus Valley in just three days’ time. Rose believes if the prophecy comes true then it will confirm her worst fear–the PTSD she was diagnosed with after Gaby’s death has changed her in ways she can’t face. So with help from new friends, Rose sets out to stop the flood, but her connection to it, and to this strange little town, runs deeper than she could’ve imagined.

I mean, with a cover and a synopsis like that, I was absolutely intrigued about this book. Though, at the same time, I wasn’t sure of it. Books like these aren’t ones that I usually gravitate before. But there was just something about this book. Maybe it was the combination that it sounded really cool, a girl who is destined to bring a flood to a small town, and the love I had seen for it online, but I knew that I wanted to give this book a shot. Trigger warnings: intrusive thoughts, PTSD, panic attacks

There’s just something about this book. It’s hard to describe, but there’s just something about. It’s not a barb stuck to something, it’s more like something that slips under your skin. There’s just something about it.

First off, this book is WEIRD. Like, it took multiple times to for me to get ordinated with what was happening. But, it embraces its weird. Though, at the same time, it just let it’s weird happen. It fully knows it’s weird, and it does not apologize for it.

Another thing that makes this book as good as it is is the writing. It’s just beautifully, spectacularly done. It does what it wants to do so carefully. It places the story gently in front of the reader, but it also doesn’t hold back from the pain it holds.

The pain is also what makes this book so good. This book is one that revolves around mental health; PTSD, anxiety, depression, grief, and everything that comes with them are highlighted. I do not feel qualified to talk about a lot of it, since it is tied so closely to PTSD, which I have no experienced. I just know that it was there, and it had a big impact. It’s all about being alright, and how it’s alright to not be alright, and that’s ALRIGHT. It’s alright to feel angry. It’s alright to feel pain. It’s alright to feel everything. It’s even alright to be scared of those emotions. It’s just alright.

The characters were some that I didn’t quite fall in love with, but ones that I respect. They’re there, and I don’t quite fully connect with them, because their emotions are so different than mine. But that’s alright! Because I can understand them, and that’s enough.

Yes, I am very extremely vague about everything, but I feel like that’s the best way to go into this book. I went in knowing very little, but the impact was extremely strong. It’s a book that’s weird, but still so good. It’s a book that’s full of pain, but is still hopeful. It’s a book that’s scary around the edges, but has a core of friendship and a journey towards healing. It’s a very solidly good, very weird, overall amazing book.

The Valley And The Flood comes out February 23, 2021! You can add it on Goodreads and pre-order a copy in the meantime!

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