Wednesday 5 September 2012

Where the River Runs

Finished September 5
Where the River Runs by Patti Callahan Henry

Apparently I gave this book to my mother a while back (although I have no memory of that) and while I am visiting she suggested I read it. It is set mostly in South Carolina Lowcountry, and the main character, Meridy Dresden, grew up in this area. A tragedy happened at a graduation party the summer after Meridy's senior year and her parents sent her away to her grandparents for the summer. She went on to university as planned, and met a wonderful man, got married and had a son. She now lives in Atlanta.
Her visits home have been brief and limited to visiting relatives. When she returns to talk to her old family housekeeper about the Gullah culture for a curriculum she is writing for her son's private school, she finds that there are issues from that night years ago that she hasn't dealt with. She is horrified to find that the community is pressuring an old friend to cough up the money to rebuild the Keeper's Cottage that was destroyed by fire that night. She knows that he doesn't bear the responsibility for its destruction and is determined to help raise the money in another way.
In her efforts to do this, she is forced to face the past and admit to her own role that night, finally grieve for the friend that she lost and reconnect with the self that she buried years before. Along the way, she finds that she has tried so hard to be the perfect wife and earn the love her husband has given her, that she hasn't been herself, and isn't sure who that is anymore. I think this is something many women can relate to and is at the heart of this novel. A very interesting read.

1 comment:

  1. Does sound good, imagine your mom remembering you gave her that book.