Saturday 26 October 2013

Barnacle Love

Finished October 11
Barnacle Love by Anthony De Sa

This novel was shortlisted for the Giller when it first came out. The story is in two parts: Terra Nova and Caged Birds Sing. Manuel Rebelo is from the Azores, and grew up in a small village with his mother and siblings. His father disappeared when he was very young and his mother, Maria Theresa de Conceição Rabelo, pinned the family hopes to him depriving his siblings to give him opportunities. Lucky for him, his siblings realized it was their mother driving a reluctant Manuel and did not resent him for this. Manuel, however, didn't want to stay in the village and be the success his mother envisioned. He wanted to escape and go elsewhere, and when he was old enough, he signed on as a fisherman to go to fish the banks near Newfoundland. Circumstances left him in Canada, and the second half of the book is several years later, where Manuel is living in Toronto with his wife Georgina and two children, Terri and Tony. Manuel is a bit of a dreamer, and some of his ambitious dreams don't get realized when he doesn't put the necessary effort in. An interesting story of a young man and his dreams versus the reality of his adult life.


  1. Love the cover, and what a true story this must be. I think my eldest moved so he could realize his dreams and not be driven by his mother. (me).

  2. The cover is good, and yes I think the author based it on his own experiences in the Portuguese Canadian community. I think many young people need to get out on their own to find their own way through life and figure out how they want to live that life.