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Light on Snow: 07/12/06

Light on Snow

Last night I stayed up a little late to finish Light on Snow by Anita Shreve. I don't normally stay up late for books but her's was that good. In all honestly, I'm suprised at how well I liked the book given the subject matter and my usual response to it. I normally don't like reading books where there is a dead child or an abandoned child and this book has both along with a dead mother.

I've been especially over-sensative to books like Light on Snow after suffering from two miscarriages before the birth of my son. I don't know if this second successful pregnancy in a row has cured me of my emotional excesses when reading sad books or if Shreve is just a gentle enough writer that the topic didn't leave me crying and setting the book aside unfinished.

Here is my BookCrossing review:

I wasn't sure how I'd handle the subject matter, that of a girl and her father trying to cope with the recent deaths of her mother and infant sister and the aftermath of finding an abandonded newborn in the snow. I was afraid it would be too melodramatic or too emotionally draining to read. Instead the use of the a now thirty year old narrator looking back at events that happened when she was twelve helped give the story a maturity and detachment needed to create an interesting story around such emotionally charged subjects.

The underlying theme of Light on Snow isn't the over powering feelings of grief but the importance of facing grief. She uses the events of the abandoned baby to underline the consequences of not facing up to one's responsibilities and the potential fallout from difficult turns of events.

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