Book Reviews

What Beauty There Is by Cory Anderson Book Review [he had not been young for a very long time]


Winter. The sky is dark. It is cold enough to crack bones.

Jack Morton has nothing left. Except his younger brother, Matty, who he’d do anything for. Even die for. Now with their mother gone, and their funds quickly dwindling, Jack needs to make a choice: lose his brother to foster care, or find the drug money that sent his father to prison. He chooses the money.

Ava Bardem lives in isolation, a life of silence. For seventeen years her father has controlled her fate. He has taught her to love no one. Trust no one. Now Victor Bardem is stalking the same money as Jack. When he picks up Jack’s trail, Ava must make her own wrenching choice: remain silent or help the brothers survive.

Choices. They come at a price.



This is such a stark, emotional story set in small town America in the middle of winter. Chilling, claustrophobic and heart breaking, it was so richly detailed I often felt like I was really there with Jack, Ava and Matty, on the run from both of their father’s past mistakes.

Jack’s father hid a stash of money years ago before being imprisoned, and after his mother’s death with a little brother to look after he starts searching for it – drawing the attention of the men who believe it to be theirs. What follows is a bloody, violent story, in a similar vein to No Country For Old Men – and interestingly, Ava’s father is called Bardem, which may be a reference.

While I loved this story and it was wrapped up well, the final chapter was confusing, and left me with a lot of unanswered questions that looking back is quite frustrating. I’m hoping the author posts an explanation somewhere, because I need answers.

Have you read this book? Loved it / hated it? Let me know in the comments!

One thought on “What Beauty There Is by Cory Anderson Book Review [he had not been young for a very long time]

  1. I have read it and liked it but it was more of a three star read for me. I am very intrigued by the ending though to continue on to the next book!

    Liked by 1 person

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