The Sound of Rain

The Sound of Rain

by Sarah Loudin Thomas
4.1 32


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The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas

Judd Markley is a hardworking coal miner who rarely thinks much past tomorrow until he loses his brother--and nearly his own life--in a mine cave-in. Vowing never to enter the darkness of a mine again, he leaves all he knows in West Virginia to escape to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It's 1954, the seaside community is thriving, and Judd soon hires on with a timber company.

Larkin Heyward's life in Myrtle Beach is uncomplicated, mostly doing volunteer work and dancing at the Pavilion. But she dreams of one day doing more--maybe moving to the hollers of Kentucky to help the poor children of Appalachia. But she's never even met someone who's lived there--until she encounters Judd, the newest employee at her father's timber company.

Drawn together in the wake of a devastating hurricane, Judd and Larkin each seek answers to what tomorrow will bring. As opposition rises against following their divergent dreams, they realize that it may take a miracle for them to be together.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780764219610
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/07/2017
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 353,412
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Sarah Loudin Thomas is a fundraiser for a children's ministry and has written for Mountain Homes Southern Style and Now & Then magazines, as well as The Asheville Citizen-Times. She is the author of Miracle in a Dry Season, Until the Harvest, and A Tapestry of Secrets. She holds a BA in English from Coastal Carolina University. She and her husband reside in Asheville, North Carolina. She can be found online at

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The Sound of Rain 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 33 reviews.
Moonpie72 18 days ago
The Appalachian Mountains are as much a part of Judd Markley as the blood that flows through his veins. They were his beloved home but, that all changed when the mine collapsed where he and his brother, Joe, worked, badly injuring him and taking the life of his little brother. The grief and the memories are to strong and he can’t bear to stay. He flees to South Carolina and is hired by a timber company. There he throws himself it to work and tries to make sense of his scattered future without Joe. When he first meets the boss’s beautiful daughter Larkin, all he sees is a superficial bratty rich girl. But as they say you can’t judge a book by its cover, even a pretty, wealthy one. Always running into each other, they begin to develop a friendship and Larkin is not what she had judged her to be. Joe was running from the past and Larkin wanted to run into the future she felt God had for her. That is to serve with her disowned brother, Ben, who was a pastor in the woodlands of Kentucky, helping the poverty stricken. Both find themselves in need of God’s strength. Ben needs His strength to turn back to Him and trust Him again. Larkin needs His strength to go against her father and his worldly plans for her even if it means hurting him. Larkin pulls some real doozeys to have her way, catching Judd in the middle. In spite of all the internal and external conflicts they find themselves falling in love. I can understand Judd’s grief and wanting to run from it. I admired his fortitude and gumption to put all he had into a new and very unfamiliar job. His work ethic was amazing. I loved Larkin’s faith and determination to follow God’s plan no matter what obstacles stood in her way. Even when faced with the reality of her naivety she wasn’t deterred. The Appalachian people and their lifestyle has long been great interest to me. The community and people that Ben worked with were wonderful! Their personalities, behavior and customs were intriguing. The contrast between their lives and Larkins were startling especially as she tried to integrate herself into their mountain home. I think my favorite character of all was Granny Jane. She was such fun and her patience Larkin and wisdom were refreshing. I was caught up in her way of thinking and sayings! An excellent book that truly drops you into the time and place right along with the characters. Another terrific book by Ms. Thomas. I received this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have stated are my own.
Fitzysmom 24 days ago
I have been reading and enjoying Sarah Loudin Thomas' books from the beginning. When I saw that The Sound of Rain was available I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. If you've read her works you know that the stories are mostly set in West Virginia. Through her words I've fallen in love with West Virginia even though I've never set foot in that state. The Sound of Rain begins deep in a coal mine of West Virginia. The opening scene made me catch my breath. I'm not going to spoil the effect by talking about it but let's just say that my admiration of coal miners and the risks they encounter every day has gone up considerably. Judd Markley is our main character and after a life-changing event he chooses to leave the mountains of West Virginia and make his way to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. I love South Carolina and Sarah's descriptive words capture the essence of the place perfectly. In South Carolina Judd trades in his minor's hat for a logger's chainsaw. Another fascinating job with a lot of risk involved. Shortly after arriving in Myrtle Beach Judd meets Larkin Heyward who just happens to be the daughter of the logging company's owner. The Heyward family appears to be a pillar of the community but underneath the surface are hurts that have torn the family apart. The stories of Judd and Larkin continue to intersect in ways that Judd never intended but the draw of Larkin continues to bring him back again and again. I enjoyed going on this journey with them. Sarah's writing is very emotional which takes the story beyond the surface and goes deep to the root of the situation. At the end of the book I wasn't ready for the story to be over. To me that's the sign of a good book. I'm hoping that we'll get to travel back in time and revisit this beautiful place and these interesting people again in a future book. I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
SignGirl58 8 months ago
"The Sound of Rain" by Sarah Loudin Thomas was not what I had expected. But if you step back into a more relaxed culture and time period, what I found within the pages makes perfect sense. The story is about more than a storm that brings damage, but instead, how people can damage or improve an environment. Like I said, the pace is calm, but that doesn't imply that Sarah Loudin Thomas has an uneventful story. Be ready for getting to know the characters, especially Judd Markley and Larkin Heyward, throughout a tough season in their life! The surprises keep coming and this sweet story will make its way into your heart. I received a complimentary copy of "The Sound of Rain" from the publisher, Bethany House, and am happy to share my honest and fair review!
SusanKC More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. It's setting is different from my normal read. I loved the historical tidbits of 1950's Myrtle Beach, Hurricane Hazel and the Appalachian hills of Western Virginia and Kentucky. Judd and Larkin, both from such diverse worlds, struggle with discerning and following God's will in their lives. George, Larkin's father, struggles with wanting to leave a legacy. But what kind of legacy is of true value? The author immediately pulled me into the story from the very first page. She is skillful in painting a picture with words that draws the reader into the story, rich with images and authentic vernacular. I look forward to reading more books by this author. I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author/publisher. I was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.
ASimplyEnchantedLife More than 1 year ago
I finished this book over a week ago and it's taken me this long to write the review. In all honesty, it's because I was bored. I didn't quite know how to express my boredom in any tangible way and I still don't. When you dislike a book, there's usually a little list of things you disliked. I don't have that. There's nothing there that I can point at and say that I disliked. I was just bored. The characters lacked authenticity to me and I felt that there was an awful lot of telling me about this story but not much showing. I suppose now that I think about it, there were a few things I disliked. Larkin was a spoiled brat who had absolutely no business getting married. Even by the end, I just couldn't believe that she had matured enough to be someone's bride. Judd was likable enough. Although I have to admit that I kept reading his name as Judd Malarkey instead of Judd Markley. That's totally not even important to mention but I felt like it. So, there's that. Then Judd really wanted to see the ocean because he hadn't ever been off the mountain. But... he flew over one when he went to war. Umm, okay. Sure, he told us that he wasn't paying attention but it fell flat for me. Anyway, my bestie loved this book and I really thought I would too. I've been to the Pavilion where this book takes place. I love the era and I love a good historical romance. This one just didn't do it for me and I feel like total malarkey because I can't think up a good reason as to why. A complimentary copy of this book was provided by Bethany House Bloggers. I was not required to write a positive review, and have not been compensated for this. All opinions are my own.
THouchin1 More than 1 year ago
This was a refreshing stroll down memory lane for me. A beautiful story set in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina during the mid 1950's. I knew girls like Larkin, girls who came from upper middle class families and had no need to work with the public. The only approved exception was to be a candy striper. Larkin feels she has a calling from God to go help the poor children in Appalachia. It is fun to see what lengths she will go to to make her dream come true. Judd is a young man from Appalachia who now works for Larkin's father. He is like a fish out of water with the locals. His rustic good looks and simple ways attract Larkin in a way the suave young locals never could. He helps Larkin fulfill her dream while coming to grips with his own demons.
Leonas_Lines More than 1 year ago
My Review of "The Sound of Rain" by Sarah Loudin Thomas "The Sound of Rain" has a beautiful cover that is soft to the touch and which holds within a beautiful story filled with adventure, suspense and romance! There are many things to like in this book "The Sound of Rain" by Sarah Loudin Thomas. The story revolves around two characters Judd Markley, an Appalachian miner turned timber worker and Larkin Heyward a dissatisfied socialite in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. These two people lead very different lives, with very different dreams, yet they are brought together through two disasters--a mine cave in and a hurricane. How will these disasters cause changes in their life pathways and will it be for good? As Judd Markley, deals with leaving behind the Appalachian mine tragedy, Larkin Heyward dreams of going to Appalachia to live and work. How could these two people ever come together to be friends or even more? As the story evolves I see God's hand at work throughout, leading and guiding in various ways and events that will lead to great changes in Judd and Larkin's lives. Will those changes bring happiness and fulfillment to both? The above questions were some that came to mind as I read this truly a beautiful story that held my attention from page 1 to page 331. I highly recommend it as a great read! I received this book for free from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review and in no way received any monetary compensation. Visit Sarah Loudin Thomas Website at: --Leona J. Atkinson
Laundry_Whispers More than 1 year ago
When I started reading this book I was on the phone with Kristin (it’s a thing, just embrace it). She hasn’t read it yet and I was so into this story I kept telling her she needed to start it ‘right now’. Just to chapter 7 so we can talk about this thing. Just start it so I can get your opinion on this other thing. She still hasn’t started it yet and I’ve finished it just as enamored by the book’s first sentence as I was the last. Imagine waking up in the most complete total darkness that you can imagine. So dark that the idea of light becomes foreign. Literally no light, fragments of anything resembling light. So dark you aren’t even sure you are alive. And that shoe you feel touching your head? It’s your own, but it’s still attached to your body. OK, I think I just painted a creepy vibe and this was totally not a creepy vibe. This was a moment of life that changed all the future moments of life. This was surviving a mine cave-in in the coal mines of West Virginia. This was surviving when your baby brother did not. This was healing from injuries that will forever be a reminder of what you lost. And in losing, what you gained. This book had such interesting and quirky characters. They were true to their roots, who they were, and where they came from. In the healing from some deep hurts comes lightness and laughter. I’m gonna have to spoiler you here for a moment. Larkin is the quintessential spoiled daughter of a wealthy businessman. She’s got a heart that wants to help people, and an ego that has decided it must be the Appalachian Mountains. ‘But Appalachia is such a poor, backwards place. You hear about hillbillies and barefooted children who leave school before the eighth grade – things like that. I want to help.’ The same day she meets Judd she insults his heritage and can’t begin to understand why he won’t help her help ‘his people’. It’s good to know that entitlement was a thing, even in the 50’s. Even in his healing, Judd has an openness to him. An awareness that life is still living and he’s a part of that. He’s not quite ready to jump in the fray but he’s not holding himself back either. Let’s be honest. They both had some growing up to do. Judd, with his straight arrow way, has to learn to be the man he was meant to be, not the dream of his brother’s that he is chasing in Myrtle Beach. Larkin has to learn that not everyone needs saving. Modern conveniences, like indoor plumbing and gas stoves, don’t fulfill your life. Sometimes the people who need the most help are the ones you don’t go looking for. There’s a lot of smaller stories in the greater story. They all weave together for the betterment of the whole. Reading as characters grow and change, for the better, with a little levity along the way is what makes this book a winner. It’s not a laugh a minute. It’s also not a dreary downer. This book is the perfect balance of finding your place in the world when you didn’t know you needed to find it. I was provided a complimentary copy of this book by Bethany House, NetGalley. I was not compensated for this review and all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I was not required to write a positive review.
Nicnac63 More than 1 year ago
The Sound of Rain is the fifth story I’ve read by Sarah Loudin Thomas. She is a talented southern fiction storyteller with a spiritual, healing inclination. I love the West Virginia, Kentucky, and South Carolina settings. The setting(s) add so much to the story. And the 1950s is a unique time period (for me) in historical fiction. The nostalgic feel is as much a character in the story as the main characters, Judd and Larkin. Judd is an interesting man. He deals with his upended life the best he knows how, but something is missing. Larkin is the daughter of Judd’s new boss, has a completely different outlook and background than Judd. The two are attracted, but struggle with their dreams of the future. Cons: I had one or two unanswered questions upon completion, and the pacing was a bit slower than I prefer. You can’t go wrong with a SLT book. Ms. Thomas infuses her stories with tangible emotion and a sweet, spiritual thread. The Sound of Rain is a sweet, clean, satisfying read. I received a complimentary copy from Bethany House and NetGalley.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is told through two different perspectives. The first one is Judd Markley, a man who leaves his home in West Virginia because of a mining accident involving him and his brothers. Judd was lucky to get away with just a broken leg, however his brother had not been so lucky and had his own life taken away. He swears he will never go into another mine and moves to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina to get a fresh start on life. On the train down, he meets a nice man who works at a timber company and says he will introduce Judd to the boss for a job. The second perspective is told through Larkin Heyward, whose father owns the timber company. Larkin is treated like a child by her father and not allowed to do the things that she really wants to do. She volunteers at the local hospital, but one day hopes to move north in order to help the poor and disadvantaged. Later that night Larkin and Judd meet at the beach where their story begins. Reading the Synopsis, I became very curious as to where this story was going to go as it only talks about a hurricane and then needing a miracle to keep the two together. I was immediately captivated by the way the author describes the 1950s and found the writing style comforting. When the author starts describing the hurricane it made me feel as if I was experiencing one myself, which led me to realizing that I felt very close to the characters. It is very rare to feel close to the characters so early in the book, making the author very skilled at writing stories. Family is also a big part in this book and causes characters to run away and move towards others. Through family, the author communicates real life with how growing kids want to do their own thing, even if it is against what your parents want for you. The two main characters are opposites in the fact that, Judd wants to stay away from West Virginia and received a solid job working at the Timber Company. Whereas Larkin wants to move away from South Carolina and go up north in order to help deprived people. They find themselves constantly at odds and are torn between following their heart and doing what they have always wanted to. When Larkin and Judd start having feelings for each other, things become more complicated as they struggle to stay together. I greatly enjoyed the way the author told this part of the story because it kept me very enraptured throughout the entire book causing me to never want to put it down. This book contains real life situations in hurricanes, complicated relationships, and family. I found it very heartwarming and comforting to read, however there were parts that tended to pulled at my heartstrings. But somehow those parts made the conclusions even more gratifying. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves a real life situation historical fiction book. I received this book for free from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.
Kathae More than 1 year ago
I've thoroughly enjoyed Thomas' previous books, and this latest offering did not disappoint. First, she tells the story well. Judd Markley, physically and emotionally hurting after a mining accident that took his brother's life, moves from his West Virginia home to start a new life in South Carolina. His story of finding his way and forging new relationships was very satisfying. Secondly, the author has a writing style that is comfortable and easy to read, as I was able to quickly get through the book. But most of all, Thomas really gets the time and place of her books, and easily transports the reader there. Although the book takes place before I was born, I felt the nostalgia as I read. Told mainly from Judd's perspective, this book has many male characters, which gives it appeal to a wider audience. For those who love the 50s, or the mountains, or the ocean, this is a book to treasure. I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Bethany House, for review purposes. The thoughts expressed here are my own.
bookbloggerKB More than 1 year ago
The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas Judd Markley’s life has changed forever with the cave-in at the mine that took his younger brother’s life. He decides to take up his brother Joe’s dream and go south where he plans to get a job in the timber business. He finds a job in the thriving town of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Advancing through the ranks of the company, he finds the eye of the owner, Mr. Heyward, on him for more than one reason. Meanwhile Larkin Heyward, the boss’s daughter catches Judd’s interest. She is so full of life that he realizes that he can dream again after his brother’s death. But their dreams are pulling them in opposite directions. Is their love strong enough to pull them through? Set in Appalachia and Myrtle Beach in 1954, the author gives interesting information about Hurricane Hazel and the impact it had on Myrtle Beach . The characters were realistic and interesting, especially Granny Jane. I did find it a bit implausible to think of Granny Jane, who had been on her death bed, making the trip for the wedding. The book was a pleasant but not riveting read. I have read most of Thomas’ other books and found them a bit harder to put down. However, if the author decides to write a sequel, I would be curious to see what happens to Judd and Larkin. I received a free copy from the publisher for this, my honest review.
ForTheArtOfIt More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. It took me quite a bit longer to read than I normally spend with a book but that wasn't due to the book at all. It's a historical romance that is actually a bit more than that. Yes, Judd and Larkin fall in love; but their story unfolds in a way that is so rich and has such depth for each character that I can't think of it as simply a romance. Judd doesn't strike me as the typical romantic hero; perhaps this is because Thomas gives us the measure of him as a man....and not just his rugged good looks. There is something about him that inspires confidence in the people he encounters: from employers to co-workers to boarding house residents to family. It is clear that Judd notices and cares about the people around him and is a man who gains respect for the way he treats people. Another reason I found him to be a great character is that he is hurting over the loss of his brother, and while he seeks out a new life, he is not prone to shutting out the world around him. There is no doubt that Judd is the star of this book. Larkin is a great character as well. She is a good representation of young women at the time but also shows the strength and desire to seek more than what society has laid out for young women (of her social class) during the 1950s. I love the way Thomas develops this, not as a bold, abrasive, feminist character but as a woman who knows that there is more than superficial pursuits to life. I also loved how Thomas developed the relationship between Larkin and her parents. It is obvious that she loves and respects them even as she prepares to step outside of the plans they have for her. She is not rude or hateful or mean-spirited in her defiance of their wishes and continually seeks to make amends and yet be able to make decisions for herself and her life. This book has a very slow pace for me. I would dip into it, read a chapter and feel like I had read 5. This is not a story that unfolds over 2 months; it simmers, gently, and the plot and the relationships all work together so beautifully. Not only does Thomas explore first and lasting love, she also looks into family relationships and obligations, friendship, and community. It's absolutely beautiful....which allows me to overlook (mostly) the very poor character development of Mr. Heyward, Larkin's father and Judd's employer. He has such an impact on them, both individually and as a couple, and has such growth as a character that it seems a little off because I don't know the positive parts of him to balance out the negative aspects of his character. While I think his character could have been developed a little bit more, it doesn't make me love the book less.
AngelN1 More than 1 year ago
The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas is set in the 1950s, which I enjoyed, since that isn't a time frame often chosen by historical fiction writers. I was interested in the Appalachian aspect, and I did appreciate that the author portrayed the mountain people with a sense of respect and dignity, but the mountains are only a small portion of the story. Most of it is set in South Carolina. The story moves rather slowly, and introduces many minor stories within the main story. I actually enjoyed some of the minor stories better. I did like the main character, Judd, and I thought that his character seemed realistic. I felt that Larkin was less developed as a character, though, and her family's issues should have felt more interesting than they did. Overall, I liked this book but didn't feel compelled to finish it in any hurry. The author is good at painting the scenery and other descriptive writing, but the plot could have used a bit more attention. I received this book from the publisher, Bethany House, for the purpose of writing a review, but all opinions are my own.
MJK108 More than 1 year ago
“If Providence were real, he wouldn’t even be here---a man without a home drifting on a southern breeze.” In Bethel, West Virginia in April of 1954 a mining accident forever changes the lives of two brothers. One never makes it out of the mine alive and the other struggles to live in the aftermath of the accident. Sarah Loudin Thomas tells a haunting story of two young people trying to live life through other people’s dreams. Judd Markley moves to South Carolina to work timber and fulfill his brother Joe’s dreams. Larkin Heyward, a vivacious young woman with big, charitable dreams, stays at home trying to compensate for the loss of her brother, Ben, from their family. When the two young people begin to spend time together, they each eventually feel the need to live their own life, even if it means living it in two different states and in two very different ways. This introspective, slightly sad tale weaves a story with an ending that will satisfy readers. Ms. Thomas makes her characters feel like real, down to earth people. The book was slow getting started, but the story picked up momentum as it went further. The story has more of a realistic tone than a typical fiction novel. If you enjoy Christian fiction with a realistic quality, this book is for you. This ARC copy was received from Bethany House Publishers and in exchange for an honest review. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.
booksandbeverages More than 1 year ago
Sarah Loudin Thomas has written a well researched historical and very romantic story. There’s no doubt about that. If you enjoy romance set in interesting places and times, I think you should check this one out. It’s definitely a love story for the hopeless romantics. But, I can’t say it was my favorite of her novels. You see, this one isn’t like her previous novels and series, where the heroines each had unique qualities and characteristics. I LOVED that about them. It was such a different take on a historical fiction novel (with the thread of romance as well), and it added a creative layer to the story and the different relationships of the characters. I was hoping for something like that again. I know it’s not always fair to judge novels that way, but I’m human internet :). So while this isn’t my favorite from Thomas, if you love all things romance, be sure to give this one a chance. (Thank you to Bethany House for a copy of the book. All views expressed are my own.) Originally posted at
Lane_Hill_House More than 1 year ago
Monday, December 11, 2017 The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas, © 2017 My Review: Judd Markley had a different day than planned; never hoped for by any man. But, at least he was safe for now. The bowels of the earth had released him again for another day. Miners expected to be confronted with the unexpected, not knowing what a day would bring. Underground was just that way ~ uncertain and unaffected by disturbance ~ it just kept to itself unless attacked by a pickax and chose to revolt. Cutting away the earth for treasures ~ needed for warmth and care of families in the Appalachia mountain pathways. Maybe there would be a new way now, away from West Virginia and the pain of loss. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina ~ 1954 Judd Markley I've gotten a job loading pine logs for a lumber plantation and find it alright work. Hot and sticky, but above ground, anyway. Sand is different from the rocky soil I have known back home. I met the boss's daughter, Larkin, the day I got the job. She's young, carefree, and loves her convertible. Oh, to have no sad memories to hold me back. How did I ever get here ~ to an expected place of warmth and restoration? Again, nothing calm and certain to shelter me... Larkin Heyward This is all I have ever known. I want to go to help those who need to have my help ~ like those in need of learning in the Appalachian mountains I have read about in a magazine recently. I volunteer at our local hospital. Maybe Daddy will let me go off to school to be a nurse. I love going to the Pavilion to dance in the evenings. My girlfriends go with me and we enjoy burgers and fries and the lively music. A new man has hired on. Maybe I can learn from him about the people he is from. He talks differently than me. ~* Judd managed because of his skills and keeping confidences. Because of who he was, he would fit anywhere it seems. ~* Larkin didn't fare as well, except for Granny Jane's grace in teaching her to use a cookstove. I have hopes for her. I enjoyed reading how these families adjusted to changes. Both the acceptance and wariness when someone new comes to an area they aren't born to or know. ***Thank you to Bethany House Publishers for sending this copy of The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas. This review was written in my own words. No other compensation was received.***
RobbyeReviewer More than 1 year ago
I was interested in the book, The Sound of Rain, because of the settings of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, West Virginia and Kentucky. I lived and worked in Myrtle Beach just before Hurricane Hugo hit, then visited after Hugo and was amazed at the devastation to the area and changes to the shoreline. I also lived for a short while in St. Albans, West Virginia. In addition, I was interested because Sarah Loudin Thomas is a new author to me. The story’s premise is about Judd Markley, a coal miner from West Virginia, and Larkin Heyward, the daughter of an affluent family in Myrtle Beach. Judd leaves the hills of West Virginia and moves to Myrtle Beach after a coal mining accident left him permanently injured and killed his brother. His main reason for moving is to honor his brother’s dream of going to Myrtle Beach. Larkin wants to move to Kentucky to give meaning to her life and help the poor who live there. I am not sure how I feel about the book. Several elements of it are good, and other aspects made it less than enjoyable for me. The sequence of events during Hurricane Hazel didn’t seem realistic in many ways, especially considering the destruction it caused. Plus, Larkin’s deception toward Judd and deliberate disobedience to her father bothered me, too. Overall, I felt the author tried to put too much into the book, making it feel watered down (no pun intended). There were characters I would have liked to have gotten to know better, for instance, Granny Jane, Ben and Larkin’s mother. The Sound of Rain was interesting but not as compelling as other stories I have read. I enjoyed reading about Myrtle Beach in 1954 and was sad to hear The Pavilion had its last season in 2006 and was demolished for redevelopment in 2007. I received this book from NetGalley. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.
Librarycataloger More than 1 year ago
The Sound of Rain is the story of a man and woman realizing their love for each other but it is also a reminder that family love and loyalty should always outweigh the desire for prestige and power. Judd Markley is the hero we often dream about--a hardworking, moral man who finds himself running from the memories of a mine cave-in that left him with a physical injury and an emotional trauma. He leaves his West Virginia home and travels to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and soon meets socialite Larkin Heyward, the daughter of his new employer. His excellent work ethics are noticed by his superiors and he begins to advance in his job in the lumber industry; he also begins to realize that his dead brother would want him to leave grief behind and enjoy being alive. Part of his renewed interest in living does involve sweet Larkin and she finds herself attracted to Judd but her heart is set on joining her brother in his mission work in Kentucky and Appalachia, the very place that Judd was so determined to leave. Author Sarah Loudin Thomas has written an endearing story and I found myself transported back to 1954. This historical fiction story features coal mine cave-ins in WV, a devastating hurricane in SC and a storyline with unforgettable characters who live in the hills of Kentucky. There is even a mystery concerning unknown family members and a lost treasure. Through it all there is the underlying element of believing in God, loving Him wholeheartedly and striving to walk in His light. The author begins the book with Judd in total darkness seeking to find daylight and throughout the story she uses the analogy of light versus darkness in our spiritual journeys. From the first sentence to the last, I found myself captivated by The Sound of Rain and I recommend it to those whIo enjoy Christian historical fiction. . I received a complimentary copy from the author and Bethany House Publishers but I was under no obligation to post a review.
amvkv More than 1 year ago
Don’t judge a book by its cover. I was not captured by the image or colors on the cover, but when I opened the cover and started reading, I was indeed taken captive. Sarah Loudin Thomas wove a captivating story giving us a couple of different settings. Judd Markley realizes he is alive after the mine cave-in, but then he wonders about his brother who was working with him. Judd has no intention of ever going underground again, and he decides to go to his brother’s dream place, Myrtle Beach, SC. Who wouldn’t love Myrtle Beach? He gets a job, not on the beach, but for a timber company. And that lovely young woman he sees at the dance, at the beach, is none other than the owner’s daughter, Larkin Heyward. She wants her life to mean something and manipulates the situation to go to her pastor brother who lives among the poor in Kentucky. So now we have two people falling in love who exchange living locations. How can this be resolved? Father Heyward is anti-religion and he never wanted his son to become a preacher. Now his daughter is living with him and choosing a simple life serving people. He is not one bit happy about any of that, so he figures he can use her attraction to Judd to bring her out of the hills and back where she belongs. Judd has promotions, but that kind of a resolution would seem so empty. Ms. Thomas crafts a great story and ending while Bethany House once again publishes a 5 star book read. I received this book from the publisher and this is my honest review.
NDowning More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book. The author is a talented story teller who draws you in with her vivid descriptions. The setting was different than what I’m used to, but I thought it was quite interesting to learn about West Virginia and South Carolina in the 1950’s, especially with the “guest appearance” of hurricane Hazel. The characters were maybe not as developed as I would like, but overall it was an enjoyable book. I would give The Sound of Rain a rating of 3 out of 5 stars. Bethany House Publishers provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
sesquius More than 1 year ago
The era in which the book was written, the 1950's, compelled me to select this book. The cover art cemented my decision. The book is about Judd Markely who is a former coal miner. He heads to South Carolina and works as a logger and meets with Larkin Heyward who just happens to be the boss's daughter. She has grand plans for his life and seeks to follow in her brother's footsteps in ministering to those in the appalachia area.  Honestly, I thought the back cover of the book was a bit deceptive. It promises you a true relationship between Judd and Larkin, and that the hurricane that blows through brings them closer together. We don't really get to know Larkin other than she doesn't want to continue working as a candy striper and she wants to follow in her brother's footsteps. We actually know more about Judd than Larkin. A very light story with some drama. All in all, I really didn't care for the book. It took me just over three weeks to finish it. I received this book complimentary from the publisher, Bethany House. All opinions are my own with no requirements to leave a positive review.
MaureenST More than 1 year ago
We have a couple disasters here, a mine cave in and then a hurricane, and our Judd gets to live through both, but as we see he is not left unscathed. Then the author brings us the Heyward family, a man devastated by his upbringing of being poor, having had a father that gave all they had to the church, but we sure see he did something right with his children. The story lets us spend time at both the ocean and then we go to both West Virginia and Kentucky, and we see how outsiders are not easily accepted into the mountain community, people are wary, even the pastor has to work to earn their trust. A book that has grief and romance, along with the strength of family, and we see how one works to control others to get what he wants, or does he? A page turner for sure and one that will have you reading late into the night. I received this book through Bethany House Publishers Blogger Program, and was not required to give a positive review.
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
The Sound of Rain is an okay read for me. I liked how it began in West Virginia Appalachians with Judd. I was enjoying how it all began, but then when he moved away to South Carolina I was not as interested. The story seemed to slow down a bit while he was there. I really can not explain it, just felt like the connection with him was lost. I was relieved when he was introduced to Larkin. She  was not a likable character at first but she grew on me. I admired her determination to become her own person. I thought she carried the story much better and I was able to keep reading. Overall, the Sound of Rain is worth a read and I give it three stars. I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.
Teresa More than 1 year ago
Such a fun book to read. I loved getting to know Judd and Larkin and going through their stories with them. I enjoyed getting to visit the Appalachian Mountains and Myrtle Beach and going through a mine collapse in West Virginia and a hurricane in South Carolina, all while sitting comfortably in my home:-) I received a copy of the book for my honest review.