Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Sign for Drowning - Rachel Stolzman

Summary: Anna has grown up haunted by her younger sister's death. In the life she constructs as a barrier against the emotional wreckage of her family tragedy, Anna settles comfortably into a career as a teacher of deaf children. But a challenge arrives - in the form of a young girl. Adrea's disarming vulnerability and obvious need for love offer Anna the possibility of reconnecting with the world around her - if she has the courage to open her heart.

Summary from back of the book, cover photo from barnesandnoble.com

My Review: I was very excited when I was sent a copy of this book to read and review and it did not disappoint. This is the story of Anna, who at the age of eight, on what was deemed to be an ordinary family beach vacation, witnesses her younger sister's drowning in the ocean. The guilt that plagues Anna after this tragedy is central to this story line. Her powerless struggle continues as her parents are lost to her as well, consumed in their own personal grief. Anna finds solace as she learns sign language as a means of communicating with her dead sister.

Many fascinating characters enter this story, providing the novel with dimension. A couple of twists spice the story up. Anna's plunge into motherhood by adopting Adrea shows compassion and bravery, while providing a bit of education into technological advances succoring the hearing impaired. Throughout the heart of this novel remains Anna's quest to trust herself again, regain power over her own life and allow herself permission to love.

The characters were inspirational but, for unexplainable reasons, I had difficulty connecting with them and never felt completely immersed within the book. Yet the writing has a quiet beauty to it. It's as if reading someone's personal thoughts, allowing the raw emotions to ring authentic.

My Rating: 3.75 Stars

To Sum it up: A poetic tale of love, loss, and rediscovery.


Anonymous said...

I like the sound of this one. I'll add it to my wish list. Thanks for sharing.

KyleeJ said...

Great review! I've just added this to my GoodReads list.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

I've been wanting to read this book - great review!


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