Choosing only a handful of books to read about the Caribbean is like holding a small mound of snow in your palms. You know each snowflake is unique and you also know that you've only touched a fraction of what is falling from the sky. And while you may be hard pressed to find snow on any part of the Caribbean, you can easily discover countless stories about these 7,000 islands, and all of them are different. Still, just as it is magical to hold those few snowflakes, it is also magical to read any of the half dozen books we've culled together here.


Hoffman, Alice. The Marriage of Opposites.
This is a fictional biography of Rachel Pomié Pizzaro, mother to eleven children, including the great artist Camille Pissaro. Set mostly on the island of St. Thomas, Rachel grows up, reveling in the colors of her small world, much as her son will in his own time. Her strong-will leads to family conflicts and community scandals, but she accepts her fate. Camille’s talent matures, much to his parents’ dismay, but Rachel eventually supports his life as an artist, and he becomes one of the fathers of Impressionism. This is another spectacular achievement by Hoffman, recalling The Dovekeepers in its elegiac prose, yet bringing memories of Blackbird House and The Red Garden as generations succeed one another.
# Posted By Joe Da Rold | 6/6/19 3:51 PM
Danticat, Edwidge. Claire of the Sea Light. 2013.
Claire’s birthday has always been a day of death. Her mother died giving birth, so each year her father takes her to visit her mother’s grave. On the day of her seventh birthday, a rogue wave pulls under the boat of a local fisherman, and despite a long search, his body cannot be found. Danticat takes the reader back in time to tell the story of Claire’s mother and father, and to explore the relationships of others in this Haitian coastal village. The novel reads like a folk story and sings with poetry. Only the ending falls short, even though Danticat has the perfect opportunity for a truly moving finale
# Posted By Joe Da Rold | 6/6/19 3:54 PM
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