Riversong by Tess Hardwich
Review by Cynthia Harrison
Riversong by indie author Tess Hardwick plucked a chord deep in my fiction loving soul. When tragedy struck her family, young Lee Tucker was left alone to care for herself and her alcoholic mother in rural Oregon. Lee, with the help of an elderly neighbor who believed in Lee’s talent and intelligence, pulled herself up from those tangled roots to become a successful businesswoman in Seattle.
After a stint with Microsoft, she and her husband start their own company developing computer games for extreme gamers. In Seattle, Lee lives a life she couldn’t even have imagined when she’d been a lonely scared child back in Oregon. Then, when his latest game goes bust, her husband kills himself before Tess has a chance to tell him she’s pregnant.
Lee, even while she grieves, needs to find the cash to pay off her creditors, dangerous types who play by their own rules. With the help of a friend, she sells everything she has, enough to hold off the sleazy creditors for a while, so she can slip out of town and head toward her safe haven in Oregon. When her mother died, Lee inherited the land and house. If only she can rehab the house, which has become a nightmare from a Hoarders episode, and sell the land, she may earn enough to pay off the loan before the goon squad shows up. Meanwhile she needs to find a paying job because she’s eating for two. Slowly, Lee builds a solid community of friends, including one special man who might be able to heal her heart. Hardwick’s ability to create community, her talent for drawing a clear picture of a down-and-almost-out small town, and her striking portrayal of complex and compelling Lee, make this novel a deep delight of joys and sorrows.