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Deep Down Things
Tamara Linse, author

Adult; General Fiction (including literary and historical); (Market)

Deep Down Things, Tamara Linse’s debut novel, is the emotionally riveting story of three siblings torn apart by a charismatic bullrider-turned-writer and the love that triumphs despite tragedy. From the death of her parents at sixteen, Maggie Jordan yearns for lost family, while sister CJ drowns in alcohol and brother Tibs withdraws. When Maggie and an idealistic young writer named Jackdaw fall in love, she is certain that she’s found what she’s looking for. As she helps him write a novel, she gets pregnant, and they marry. But after Maggie gives birth to a darling boy, Jes, she struggles to cope with Jes’s severe birth defect, while Jackdaw struggles to overcome writer’s block brought on by memories of his abusive father. Ambitious, but never seeming so, Deep Down Things may remind you of Kent Haruf’s Plainsong and Jodi Picoult’s My Sister’s Keeper.
In Linse's novel of family struggle, Maggie Jordan; her sister, CJ; and her brother, Tibs, were orphaned when their parents died in a tragic accident, leaving the siblings to care for each other. Years later, Maggie falls for a writer and former bull rider named Jackdaw. As Jackdaw works to finish a novel, Maggie becomes pregnant and the couple gets married. But when their baby has a serious birth defect and Jackdaw finds himself in the grips of writer's block and haunted by his past, Maggie must once again rely on her siblings for support. Linse has created an intimate portrayal of a small family coming to terms with tragedy and strife. While the various relationships are confusing at times, readers will recognize and empathize with the characters. Linse juggles the hurts of the different characters well, with each suffering from a need to belong and struggling to balance their family and personal lives.