Covenant Spring

Fiction - Southern
337 Pages
Reviewed on 05/18/2022
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Viga Boland for Readers' Favorite

To read Covenant Spring by Christopher Watson is to be transported not just to another place and time, but to a world that is both strange and familiar. Astute readers may recognize it as a world deep within ourselves, the one so many lack the courage to explore. If you are one of the braver ones, then start reading. You won’t want to stop until you reach the end and once you do, you might find yourself wondering where you’ve been. It’s that intense a trip.

Despite its unique plot, Covenant Spring is close to being literary fiction as we explore the convoluted, unbridled thoughts of the protagonist narrator, Danny Ivy. Danny’s musings call to mind the old hit song, “Is that all there is?” His career, his experiences, and his relationship with his parents and few friends have left him jaded. He’s desperately in need of a reason to go on. Enter Mordecai Bass who takes him to his swampland origins for a weekend family reunion. What Danny sees, hears, and experiences there strains both his and the reader’s belief. When the weekend is over, Danny is forever changed, and depending on the reader’s ability to identify with much of Danny’s thinking, so is the reader.

To enter the world of Covenant Spring, its characters and its plot is almost a mystical, even poetic experience. Watson’s descriptions are rich and metaphorical; his characters are simultaneously earthly and ethereal. How can that be? There is no easy explanation for how Watson has achieved this magical blend of the real and unreal other than to say he is a brilliant writer. No review can capture the full essence and impact of Covenant Spring as that will truly be unique to each of us. Pick up your copy now and enter the embrace of Covenant Spring: a profound journey into ourselves.

K.C. Finn

Covenant Spring is a work of fiction in the Southern drama subgenre. It is suitable for the general reading audience and was penned by author Christopher Watson. The book follows car salesman Danny Ivy as his new friendship with fellow salesman Mordecai Bass leads him into the world of Mordecai’s dark family history and struggles with a strange power. Together in North Carolina for a Bass family reunion at which Danny is clearly more than a visitor, he is forced to question his own sanity as he struggles to protect the son of CeeCee – Mordecai’s powerful sister and object of his affections.

This was a complex and enchanting narrative set in a picturesque part of the world and with a nuanced character study of both someone's struggle with innate power and someone else's struggle to comprehend it. Author Christopher Watson’s gorgeous prose brings the whole experience to life in a distinctive and engaging way as the rich characterization bubbles up to create endlessly interesting situations and developments. The journey that Danny and Mordecai undertake throughout the story is sublime and constantly provokes the evolution and development of their characters, changes that unfold carefully and at a steady pace throughout. Overall, Covenant Spring is a story that rewards the investment of time readers make with an involved human story brought to life by wonderful prose on every page. It manages to convey the magical premise, something that feels real and down to earth. I recommend this book highly to anyone looking for their next impossible to put down reading experience.

Rabia Tanveer

Covenant Spring by Christopher Watson is a Southern novel about a man named Danny and how his life changed. Danny Ivy was a car salesman in New Jersey. Son of a struggling father and raging alcoholic mother, Danny didn’t expect much from life and always rolled with the flow. However, that all changed when Mordecai “Cai” Bass was hired by Danny’s company. The new guy shocked everyone with his decision to work for free for a few months, but he worked on his terms. Before he knew it, Danny and Cai became fast friends and realized they had a lot in common. So, when Cai asked Danny to join him back home in Covenant Spring for a family reunion, Danny accepted. That was the point when Danny realized Cai had it so much worse than him. Before he knew it, Danny was fighting for his life and for the people he had come to love.

Covenant Spring was addictive and I didn’t want to stop reading it. I was invested in what would happen next to Danny, Cai, and CeeCee. The narrative style reminded me of Arthur Miller and Death of a Salesman. Author Christopher Watson wrote rich, dynamic, and driven characters that were easy to love and connect with. I loved Danny’s journey the most. At the beginning of the novel, Danny was a leaf blowing away, and, in the end, he directed the wind and decided where to go. I could write a whole thesis on this book, to be honest. The descriptions were very important to understand where the story was going and how Danny was reacting to any kind of change. The narrative was almost lyrical in nature and pace. Reading this novel was like a journey, and I would love to revisit Covenant Spring once more!