Monday, March 8, 2010
Raven Stole The Moon by Garth Stein
Synopsis From Back Cover:
When Jenna Rosen abandons her comfortable Seattle life to visit Wrangell, Alaska, it's a wrenching return to her past. The hometown of her Native American grandmother, Wrangell is located near the Thunder Bay Resort, where Jenna's young son, Bobby, disappeared two years before. His body was never recovered, and Jenna is determined to lay to rest the aching mystery of his death. But whispers of ancient legends begin to suggest a frightening new possibility about Bobby's fate, and Jenna must sift through the beliefs of her ancestors, the Tlingit, who still tell of powerful, menacing forces at work in the Alaskan wilderness. Armed with nothing but a mother's protective instincts, Jenna's quest for the truth behind her son's disappearance is about to pull her into a terrifying and life-changing abyss.
I have to admit upfront that I had never heard about this book or the author before, which after reading it I should be apologizing for, so when I was offered a chance to read the reissue of the book and I read the synopsis, I jumped at the chance. Now I will also have to admit to feeling a little disappointment when I first got the book and glimpsed the cover. It looked like any other book out there and had a hint of "chick lit" to it. If I had seen the book in a store, sitting on a new release table, I would not have picked it up. I actually looked up the earlier cover for the book, and while it wasn't the best either, I felt that it caputred the mysterious aspect of the book better. While this cover seems to say not much other than that it's pretty.
Now that I got that off my chest, I have to say I loved this book. The story was a blend of drama, mystery, paranormal, myth, and fantasy all rolled up into a very cohesive book that even when it took the fantastical turns, you always feel as if it's real. Jenna and Robert (her husband) felt like real people trying to deal with their loss in different ways which caused strain in the relationship. It just so happens that on the anniversary of their son's death they are required to go to a dinner party which ends up being too much for Jenna. She ends up taking off and ends up back in Alaska where the tragedy happened.
Jenna meets three individuals who are to become very important in her life, Oscar the loveable dog who may be more than he seems, Eddie the adorable fisherman, and David the tribal shaman who is dealing with demons of his own. With their help Jenna takes a terrifying and touching journey to discover what happened to her son and where he is at now.
I've been struggling to do this review simply because so much of this book is important to the story and I don't want to give too much away. The last thing I will say is that I felt this book was the perfect blend of the fantastic and realism, that the way these two elements are blended is seamless and you aren't always sure where one ends and the other begins.
I would like to thank Sarah at Terra Communications for the opportunity to read this wonderfully written book.