by Sandra Brown
3.9 361

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Rainwater by Sandra Brown

A romantic historical novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Seeing Red about an independent woman who runs a boarding house in Dust Bowl Texas.

Ella Baron runs her Texas boarding house with the efficiency of a ship’s captain and the grace of a gentlewoman. She cooks, cleans, launders, and cares for her ten-year-old son, Solly, a sweet but challenging child whose busy behavior and failure to speak elicits undesired advice from others in town. Ella’s plate is full from sunup to sundown. When a room in her boarding house opens up, the respected town doctor brings Ella a new boarder―the handsome and gallant Mr. David Rainwater—but Ella is immediately resistant to opening up her home to this mysterious stranger.

Even with assurances that Mr. Rainwater is a man of impeccable character, a former cotton broker and a victim of the Great Depression, Ella stiffens at the thought of taking him in. Dr. Kincaid tells Ella in confidence that Mr. Rainwater won’t require the room for long: he is dying. Begrudgingly, Ella accepts Mr. Rainwater’s application to board, but she knows that something is happening; she is being swept along by an unusual series of events. Soon, this strong-minded, independent woman will realize that the living that she has eked out for herself in the small bubble of her town is about to change, whether she likes it or not...

Racial tensions, the financial strain of livelihoods in cotton drying up into dust, and the threat of political instability swirl together into a tornado on the horizon. One thing is certain: the winds of change are blowing all over Texas—and through the cracks in the life that Ella Barron has painstakingly built. This is the story of a woman who takes her life’s circumstances in both hands, but who will be forced to reckon with the chaos of her historical circumstances..

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781439176139
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication date: 11/03/2009
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 30,624
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

Sandra Brown is the author of sixty-eight New York Times bestsellers, including Mean Streak, Deadline, Low Pressure, and Smoke Screen. Brown began her writing career in 1981 and since then has published over seventy novels, most of which remain in print. Sandra and her husband, Michael Brown, live in Arlington, Texas.


Arlington, TX

Date of Birth:

March 12, 1948

Place of Birth:

Waco, Texas


Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters, Texas Christian University, 2008

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Rainwater 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 361 reviews.
1DANA3 More than 1 year ago
This is a story within a story with lots of challenges, from terminal illness to broken-heartedness, to autism, to poverty to disappointment to tragedy to courage to sacrifice to courage and all kinds of love. Brown did her research. She had the jargon down for the 1930's on and the way people thought back then, chilling racism, bigotry and such. Wonderful read! Other books I LOVED are THE HELP, EXPLOSION IN PARIS, SAME KIND OF DIFFERENT AS ME
JFJ More than 1 year ago
Depression time in America. A young lady finds herself running a boarding house to makes ends meet when her worthless husband leaves. To complicate matters, she has a little boy with autisim. The side story of the civil rights issue raises its head, becomes a major problem in the little town. But a stranger comes to town, needing a place to stay while he dies. The local doctor, who is the only one to know the circumstances of David Rainwater, takes him to the boarding house. And this mysterious man bonds with the little boy, brings him out of his shell. And of course the friendship story which nearly becomes a love story can almost make you ache inside. This is a story that you will just enjoy reading, finding out that you like the people, care about the ending, wish Sandra Brown would write more like this. Actually, when I picked up the book, it was a mistake ... I read (and love) everything by Sandra Dalles, didn't notice it was "Brown" not "Dallas." When I went to get more by Sandra Brown, I found that most of her writing is not at all like this book. Bummer. I would love to put this on my permanent shelf of favorites, but I gave it away to someone who was in town at the moment. And I just knew she would love the story as much as I did. Very good read. (If you love this one, you'll also love Sandra Dallas and Lisa Wingate.)
LCH47 More than 1 year ago
RAINWATER was a gift for my birthday and even though I was busy with Christmas preparations I couldn't wait to get started on it. This one will inspire you and tug at your heart strings. It's bittersweet, but a feel-good read, heartwarming, and touching. It's set in 1934 Texas, the era of racial conflicts, depression, the down-trodden, and always the frustrating, unfair evil, that we have in every era. This is all about the fight for survival. "Hope" is the magic word that keeps the fight alive. Wonderful story!
MaggieMaeBooks More than 1 year ago
Sandra Brown is simply a very gifted writer. Nothing else needs to be said. Buy this one, read it, love it, that's all.
1louise1 More than 1 year ago
I am an avid Sandra Brown fan. I own and have read most of her books. All I can say is that this is unlike any book she has ever written but I love it. It is a heartwarming, bittersweet story that will make you believe in the wonders of love in all aspects. The fascinating characters in 1934 Texas Come together in a way the reader might not expect. This is a wonderful, touching story, set during the depression giving the reader an accurate look at small town America, suffering through not only tough times financially but racially and what being a good neighbor and a good friend can bring you. Brown is an exceptional storyteller and a master with her dialogue. Her characters are very real and three dimensional, with their heartbreaking, yet hopeful story. Any lover of great literary fiction with a historical background will fall in love with Sandra Brown's "Rainwater". A must read! I recommend!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my first read Sandra Brown book. Rainwater is a perfect interpretation of the "best of love" and the "worst of hate". The characters are so vivid and alive! Great book! Looking forward to reading more from Sandra Brown.
CBH More than 1 year ago
Rainwater is a much different style of book than we are used to from Sandra Brown. We are used to crime, mystery, and detective, stories interlaced with love. Rainwater is a terrific book that takes us into a world about which Sandra Brown has wanted to write for years. I loved reading and thoroughly enjoying the story, the characters, and the actions of 1934 Texas with racial problems running high, education running low, and much inter-action between all the players. There is a romantic side of Rainwater also that brings some of the people together that the reader might not expect. Ella Barron runs a boardinghouse out of necessity to exist but she enjoys her routines and especially enjoys her seemingly mentally challenged son, Solly. Dr. Kincaid brought Mr. Rainwater to Ella requesting that she allow him to become a boarder. It so happened that a room was available so she took Mr. Rainwater in to join her other boarders all of who got along quite well. When Mr. Rainwater saw the things Solly was doing, he stepped in with Ella's approval and they discovered that Solly could do some amazing things with dominos, tooth picks, cards, and eventually more. He worked with Solly a lot. The racial relations of the time combined with shantytown where all the poor downtrodden lived, white and black, were an explosive issue with several in town continually bothering and outright hurting these people and any property they might have. The lack of rain and feed caused the cattle to starve. The federal government ruled that animals in that condition had to be killed and they were not allowed to be used for food, which was so much needed by the poor. When the town "bullies" came to drive the cattle into a deeply dug ditch, killed, and covered with lye so they could not be used for food, many battles and hard feelings ensued. Mr. Rainwater, even though in bad health, joined in the battle to save the cattle and allow them to be used for food. This describes the book pattern well and should entice you to purchase it and when you do don't expect to be able to put it down before finishing it. Thanks Sandra Brown. I could read more of this type stories from you. Yes, I enjoy all your other books as I think I have read all of them.
dhaupt More than 1 year ago
Rainwater is not what you'd expect from Sandra Brown in terms of genre, but it is what you'd expect in terms of context. Ms. Brown hits all the marks with this wonderful, touching story. Set during the depression she gives us an accurate look at small town America, suffering through not only tough times financially but racially and what being a good neighbor and good friend can bring you from those who don't share your views. She is an exceptional storyteller and a wizard with her dialogue that will have you feeling the dust settle in your lungs from the drought or see the despair of the citizens loosing everything they have and just trying to survive day to day. She re-created and brought to life for me the stories my Grandmother told me of the hardships of the people who lived through the great depression. Her characters are very real, three dimensional, heartbreaking and yet hopeful. The main characters of Solly, Ella and David Rainwater are amazing and will stay with you long after the final page has been turned. Any lover of great literary fiction will fall in love with Sandra Brown's Rainwater. Be prepared to be wowed by this incredible story, wonderful characters and amazing dialogue. It'll take you back and make you glad of how far we've come and yet make you hunger for the simpler times. A must read and a definite Best Seller.
WendyY More than 1 year ago
This was simply a wonderful story to read. I wanted to hug Sandra Brown when I finished it. Not many stories are this moving. I couldn't wait to get my own copy to keep and to tell people about it. Thank you so much. This will make a lovely gift for someone special.
K-Frog More than 1 year ago
I LOVED THIS BOOK! Totally different from her usual fare, this book takes you to a boarding house during the depression. The characters are wonderful and realistic. The story is compelling. I wanted this book to go on and on. The landlady is a women who has run into hard times and must run this boarding house for a living. She has a black helper who is as much a friend as an employee. They can both teach us how to give back to the community even with the little that they have. The "new boarder" is the type of man you want your daughter to date even with his "difficulty". When I finished ths book, I just sat for a moment and petted it. It touched me that much. I hope that Mrs. Brown writes more of these kinds of books.
nhomes7 More than 1 year ago
I am an avid Sandra Brown fan. I own and have read all her books; even the hard to find books first published in the 80's at various used bookstores around Arizona. All I can say is that this is unlike any book she has ever written and I love it. It's a heartwarming, bittersweet story that will make you believe in the wonders of love for the opposite sex and for a child.
CarolynSS More than 1 year ago
So different from the typical Sandra Brown novel. This one reminded me of Dorothy Garlock's series of 1940's novels. I didn't want this one to end. Beautiful heartwarming story.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 1934 in Gilead, Texas, after her husband deserted Ella Barron and their son Solly, she supports them by running a boardinghouse. Her ten year old child has issues that make him different and requires much attention from Ella. Although she is tired from all she must do to keep the place running and her son safe Ella believes it is worth it for her Solly. Ella agrees to take in a new boarder David Rainwater based on a recommendation from a friend she trusts. The quiet newcomer surprises her as he is more than just kind to Solly; he spends quality time with her son. Ella reluctantly becomes attracted to him and he is falling in love with his landlady and her child. However, when racial hatred led by affluent Conrad Ellis leads to violence aimed at Ella and Solly, David risks his life to protect those facing brutality. This is a deep Great Depression Era Texas thriller as poverty ignores race, ethnic background and gender, but people don't. Racism turns brutally ugly as Ellis and his followers are the law. Ella is a courageous individual while Solly steals hearts as the townsfolk see him as either pitiful or demonized, making him a perfect helpless target of Ellis. David will surprise readers as Solly gives him the inspiration to risk his life. Sandra Brown is at her best with this heart-wrenching one sitting Americana. Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really love reading Sandra Brown. I have enjoyed every book I have read from her. So I picked this one up thinking I couldnt go wrong. I was right! I loved this book. I was so different from her other books and I enjoyed it very much. It was a quick read and I truly enjoyed the story.
sherhigg More than 1 year ago
I loved Rainwater. I hated for the story to be over. It made me cry.
Lowcountry More than 1 year ago
I read this in two days; could not put it down. It's the first I've read of Sandra Brown, but I'll be looking for her other books now. Very touching, sad but not too sad. It's a beautiful story with an amazing twist at the end. I don't like books that depress or upset me, and this book did neither, but it still managed to touch my heart. It's a terrific read; don't miss out on it. It's not a book I'll be forgetting about any time soon.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I could almost feel the dry heat of the drought and the tension in the little town as I read. Through the book I kept hoping that something would get through to Solly. It's written on the lines of "The Notebook" and other Sparks books, also made me think of "Bridges of Madison County." I didn't want the story to end!
Reader66PA More than 1 year ago
For anyone who appreciates "light" historical fiction (not too heavy on the history), this is a wonderful book. It's a total departure for Sandra Brown, and what an amazing success it is! The chacters are beautifully developed, the plot moves along exceptionally well, and the dialogue is appropriate and believeable. I couldn't put it down!
Jalyn More than 1 year ago
My mother in law suggested this one to me saying it was different from what Sandra Brown usually writes. I loved this book! All I could think about the last hour of work was how I couldn't wait to get home and read more. I read somewhere that Sandra Brown wrote this in between writing two larger novels. I hope she writes something similar to it in the future.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Different from her usual topics, but very entertaing. A quick read not to put down until finished.
Flutterbybev More than 1 year ago
This is a "feel good" story with a bittersweet ending. A great read, a totally different romance story, but just as heart-warming.
10-1-13-3 More than 1 year ago
This story is a prize, and such a surprise. While it is not your typical romance story, there is great love from many for a special needs child. The story is wonderful and tender, and takes us back to days gone by. I highly recommend it.
Jennlvs2read More than 1 year ago
I fell in love with Mr. Rainwater! Good book! I enjoyed it.. but it seemed too short. I wanted at least 100 more pages!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book! It was a very good story!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago