Edwidge Danticat's pretty close to the top of my favorites list as far as authors go. Her earlier work [b:The Farming of Bones|31115|The Farming of Bones|Edwidge Danticat|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1347354314s/31115.jpg|2902] touched me deeply, and played a major role in me deciding to participate on a joint medical school/divinity school trip to Port-au-Prince, Leogane, and Fondwa, Haiti during graduate school. Danticat writes so beautifully and hauntingly! The well-written, soulful quality of her prose is on full display in Claire of the Sea Light
. Danticat's writing always blurs the line between prose and poetry. And the cover! Claire of the Sea Light
's gorgeous from front to back.
But in the end, the book didn't quite satisfy me. Within the span of 100 pages, I went from rave to middling reviews. Why? I wanted to hear more from Claire. I also wanted to hear a lot more from the residents of Ville Rose. Danticat chose to tell her tale through intersecting short stories about a small number of people. Her books are often on the shorter side, and the length usually works well for her. Here, she could have used an additional 200 pages to bring depth to her human and non-human (Ville Rose, Mon Initil, Anthere lighthouse) characters. I needed more time in that magical, tragic, life-affirming setting!
For those really wanting to dive into Danticat's work, I highly recommend starting with [b:The Farming of Bones|31115|The Farming of Bones|Edwidge Danticat|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1347354314s/31115.jpg|2902]. It may just change your life. And by all means, please don't let my borderline downer review deter you from reading Claire of the Sea Light
. It's a beautiful but short read.