To Heaven by Water, Paperback Book
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


David Cross is surrounded by secrets. When his wife Nancy was alive he kept secrets from her and now that she is dead, he must hide his new happiness from his children, Lucy and Ed.

But they too have their troubles: Ed's marriage is in trouble, Lucy is being stalked by her ex-boyfriend, and both worry that their father will find a new partner.

To Heaven by Water is a touching and hilarious portrait of a family trying to come to terms with loss in their own way.


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I really enjoyed this story. Cartwright has a way of getting under the skin of our modern sensibilities. The characterisation and handling of the plot are both skilful. I am not sure about Josh and Nick who partner David Cross's daughter. Both stubbornly remain two-dimensional cyphers. They have functions in the plot but do not exist really beyond that. Josh was supposedly originally a friend of Ed's (Lucy's brother) but that just does not convince. The stuff with David's brother is a bit loose - bookending the novel. However, I read the thing at one go - so no higher praise.

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