Sunday, July 17, 2011
Maine by J.Courtney Sullivan.
A delightful read, with its summery cover it would be easy to guess that this was light beach fluff, it is not although there is humour and a sprinkling of magic throughout this book that alleviates some of the darkness.
The Kellehers an old Maine family anchor this book with the Matriarch Alice in the lead and Maggie, Kathleen and Ann Maire following in her formidable wake. At the heart of the book lies secrets and alcohol and the power they have to wreck and destroy lives.
Even the supporting characters are beautifully etched and realistic, with all their joys and sorrows, triumphs and achievements they are quite beguiling and with each chapter of this book narrated by either Alice, Kathleen, Ann Maire and Maggie the fullness of each life is developed, the back story to the families tale is brilliantly told.
I particularly enjoyed the intergenerational aspect of this book and how stories can be linked through the simplest of twine.
The book is faced paced and gritty, Alice and Ann Maire in particular are both formidable and vulnerable, peppered with humour, at its heart it is a book that shows you that the power of love is immense, you can love someone but not much like them at the same time. It would certainly make a great beach read but it is testimony to the writers ability that I could love this book during a cold, rainy winter right across the world, I have already ordered her first book as this is her second and I hadn't read her before.