Sunday, August 26, 2007

Salt Rain - Sarah Armstrong

What if your mother filled your childhood with stories both of her life and yours that were not true? Stories that shaped who you became, who you believed you were?

And what if, while grieving the loss of that beloved mother, you discovered the lies and the fiction she had used in her story-telling?

You would experience yet another loss.

And if you returned to the place where those lies (and lives) all began, you would embark upon a journey of self-discovery as you uncover the truth.

For a fourteen year old girl, it is a tremendously difficult journey – even when surrounded by those who love you.

When fourteen-year-old Allie’s mother, Mae, mysteriously disappears in the dark waters of the Sydney harbor, Allie is taken by Julia – an aunt she barely knows – to stay at the dilapidated dairy farm where her mother grew up.

Allie’s journey ultimately leads her to the truth about both her mother’s past and her own – and to the knowledge that those untruths, those embellishments were themselves acts of love. A mother’s love – a fierce, protective love which, despite the “stories,” created a young girl who possesses the strength and courage to confront both the past and present and who is able to have hope for the future.

Lush rich landscapes (both exterior and interior) fill the pages of Sarah Armstrong’s novel Salt Rain. It was an absolute pleasure to read.

And what might the title Salt Rain mean?

I like to think it symbolizes not only the cleansing, releasing power of tears but the healing power of water itself – nature’s miracle – which cleanses and rejuvenates both the world and our souls.


Beth said...

Beth, you always give the best book reviews that make me want to run out and get whatever book you're talking about....this is another one.

oreneta said...

What I like about the idea is th power that stories can hold in our lives...if the stories are well told and compelling, they can shape and alter our world...

In some ways do we not all do this? Possibly not quite so blatantly, but any tale we tell about our childhood or past is only our own story of it, not anyone elses, and remains our it the truth? Is there a fixed absolute truth to many of these things or only our own truth of the situation?


Beth said...

This one sounds kind of sad, doesn't it? But it's really not - it's actually rather uplifting and hopeful.

I think we all have our own versions of the truth, of our past lives. The past shapes our future and the future then shapes how we view the past.
In that sense, every life is a story - part fiction, part fact.

Anonymous said...

This is another one I have never heard of, but can't wait to read. My Amazon bill keeps growing, but I don't care. I love when you review a book! I love thinking about the power of our past on our futures. I think most of us have to with what it true or our truth vs. what real, although probably not as much to this extent as in this book. Such a fasinating jouney......

Shari said...

I am really out of the loop as to what books are good. Thank you for this review. I think I shall check it out at the library when I can. I love to read. The last book I read (besides school textbooks) is Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Diesel said...

That is a great idea for a novel.

Speaking of books, yours is on its way....

Beth said...

We'll have to compare Amazon bills one day! (Privately.)

If you manage to get it from the library - enjoy!

What do you mean "is" on its way? That should be "are" on their way. I ordered three!