Island Beneath The Sea, a novel, Isabel Allende
Born on the island of Satint-Domingue, Zarite, known as Tete, is the daughter of an African mother she never knew and one of the white sailors who brought her into bondage. Though her childhood was one of brutality and fear, Tete finds solace in the traditional rhythms of African drums and the voodoo law she discovers through her fellow slaves.
When twenty year old Tonlonse Valmorain arrives on the island in 1770, it's with powdered wigs in his trunks and dreams of financial success in his mind. But running his father's plantation, Saint Lazare, is neither glamorous nor easy. Although Valmorain purchases young Tete for his bride, it is he who will become dependent on the services of his teenaged slave.
Against the merciless backdrop of sugarcane fields, the lives of Tete and Valmorain grow ever more intertwined. When the blood revolution of Toussaint Louverture arrives at the gates of Saint Lazare, they flee the brutal conditions of the French colony, soon to become Haiti for the rancous, free wheeling enterprise of New Orleans. There Tete finally forges a new life, but her connection to Valmorain is deeper than anyone knows and not easily severed. With an impressive richness of detail, Allende crafts the riveting story of one woman's determination to find love amid loss, to offer humanity though her own has been so battered and to forge a new identity in the cruelest of circumstances.
Miracle On The 17th Green, a novel by James Patterson and Peter De Jorge
"Miracles happen but only if you believe." Travis McKinley's life has drifted sideways. His job, his marriage, even his children all feel disconnected and distant. Has he really accomplished nothing of consequence in his life? On Christmas Day, Travis plays a round of golf and finds himself for the first time in the zone, playing like a pro. In astonishingly short order, Travis is catapulted into the PGA Senior Open at Pebble Beach, where he advances to the final open. And while his wife, his children, and a live television audience watch, a miracle takes place that changes Travis, and his family forever.
Shirley Doran told me of this little book. I loved it! Thanks Shirley!
The House on Salt Hay Road, a novel, Carin Cleridence
A fireworks factory explodes in a quiet Long Island town. In a house on Salt Hay Road, Clay Poole is thrilled by the hole it has blown in everyday life. His older sister, Nancy, is more interested in the stranger who appears, dusted with ashes, in the explosion's aftermath. The Pooles, taken in as orphans by their mother's family, can't yet know how the bonds of their makeshift household will be tested and frayed in the coming year. As their aunt tries to keep her unhappy past at bay, their uncle begins an unexpected courtship, they are pulled toward a moment of tragedy that will change everything.
The House on Salt Hay Road is suffused with a haunting sense of place; salt marshes in the summer, ice boats on the frozen Great South Bay, Fire Island in the eye of the legendary hurricane of 1938. A vivid and emotionally resonant debut, it captures the golden light of a vanished time and the hold that home has on us long after we leave it.
One more thought. I can envision two movies to come -- The Stormchasers and The House on Salt Hay Road. We'll see --
See you at Rylander.