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 Crow Lake by Mary Lawson (c. 2002)

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Posts : 123
Join date : 2008-10-22
Age : 51
Location : Geneva, Illinois

PostSubject: Crow Lake by Mary Lawson (c. 2002)   Thu 16 Apr 2009, 9:51 pm

Crow Lake by Mary Lawson (c. 2002)

Well, I had a string of duds for this topic, so it was nice to read a really good book finally!

My review:

This quiet little book ended up being one of the best reads of the year for me. It has everything a good novel should, wonderful characters, an interesting plot and a truly atmospheric time and place (Northern Ontario). The writing is absolutely beautiful and on more than one occasion, it made me think, about what we hope for, what we sacrifice and our place in the world. At its core it is a story of four children suddenly orphaned when their parents are killed in an auto accident. The two oldest, Matt and Luke, who are teenagers, struggle to keep the kids to together and care for the protagonist Kate (seven at the time of the parents' death) and their infant sister, Bo. Much of the story is told in flashback, with the adult Kate struggling with her relationship and reflecting on her career (zoology). There is a lot about living your dreams, reaching, or leaving them behind, a community pulling together, dealing with violence with some of the neighbors and some of the most real, but loving, sibling relationships I've read about. Rural Northern Ontario also factors in highly and it is fascinating to read about the settlers of the area and the harsh beauty of the biology, nature and life there. I knew virtually nothing about the area and it was great to learn. I highly recommend this for a shorter novel to really sink into. You could easily finish it in a day, but might want to savor it.

I feel compelled to mention though that there are some darker themes that run parallel to the story of the siblings, including some violent physical abuse in the neighboring family (it is not a spoiler, it's fairly clear from the onset). So that might be a little hard for some readers.

4.5 Stars out of 5

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