Sunday, November 25, 2007

Sea Glass - Anita Shreve: A Review

Title: Sea Glass
Author: Anita Shreve
Date Finished: November 23, 2007
Pages: 376
Rating: 4.25/5

This is my fourth Shreve book and my favorite so far (coming in second is The Weight of Water). I picked this up at a booksale and read it for Something About Me. While I like Shreve's writing, for some reason I wouldn't buy her books at a regular book store. I always seem to pass her up for Piccoult.

Anyway, this book is about a number of characters who are drastically different from one another but manage to come together for a common cause. The book takes place during 1929-1930--the first difference from the other books I've read which are more contemporary--and follows each of the main characters instead of a select two or so--which is also different. Among the characters there is Honora, the naive young wife of Sexton who is not always entirely honest. McDermott, a lower class factory worker who takes in the young Alphonse under his wing. And Vivian, an upperclass socialite who gets mixed in with the others at first just for something to do.

The social setting is obviously the depression, but also the factory mills of the Northeast where many of the characters work. The conditions are abysmal and the workers want change and a better life when that doesn't seem to be a possibility for anyone. Other than required non-fiction reading in college, I haven't really read anything about this specific time period and while the book was more about the lives of the characters rather than the politics (although they were present), the topics made the book an interesting read. I read this while at the in-laws for Thanksgiving and sped right through it. I would recommend it as a quick, light read--especially if you enjoy Shreve's books.


alisonwonderland said...

the only Anita Shreve novel i've read is Light on Snow. i want to read something else by her for the 2nds Challenge. maybe this is the one i should read. thanks for the review.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

I would recommed this one and The Weight of Water. The others that I read are The Pilot's Wife and The Last Time They Met (my least favorite, but still good).

Anonymous said...

I've read Light on Snow, The Pilot's Wife, and Fortunes Rocks; all very different but all good. Sea Glass is one I have picked up and put down in the store on several occasions. I may have to pick it up and bring it home!

Anonymous said...

Hello again, I was trying to see if you'd reviewed the book I just read, Crossing to Safety by Wallace Stegner. I just wrote a review of it on my blog and I wanted to see if you had read it too, but I can't see a good way to search for it. If you have read it, I would love to hear from you. Thanks! Great blog!

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

*Lisamm - The only one of those I've read is Pilot's Wife, which I liked but didn't love. I'd like to read Fortune's Rocks, though!

I haven't read Crossing to Safety nor heard of it. I'll have to check it out! Thanks for coming by (twice!).