Anita Shreve | Fiction
This is the book that compelled me to clarify my four-heart rating system. It is a perfect two hearts: “I don’t recommend it, though it was compelling enough for me to finish reading.”
This is a novel based upon the ferocious 1947 fire that broke out all along the coast of Maine (yes, fires have a significant place in recent blog postings!) It tells the made-up tale of Grace Holland, a 24-year old woman whose house burns down and her challenges as she is left with two toddlers to protect and support.
Unfortunately, it is too saccharin for my tastes. I don’t believe Ms. Shreve manages to convey almost any of the angst, anger, and pain such a disaster would instigate. Grace’s resolutions come too easily and are not believable.
Shreve’s writing style is, however, absorbing. This novel is fast-paced, a quick and easy read. I DO recommend it if, given that it is late July, you are looking for a rather mindless beach read. It is perfect for that! If you have more important, more satisfying books on your reading list, then defer this one and move on.