Carey, author of In the Country of the Young
(2000), again astutely blends realism and magic in this tale of two patients in an upscale Maine rehab center. Alba, 25, has been admitted yearly for 10 years and is currently diagnosed with panic disorder. When Oscar is admitted, they bond immediately, each sensing the possibility of something positive in their lives. Alba then discovers letters written by a patient in the 1930s that were never mailed. The woman, part Abenaki Indian, was a "healer," and her seizures gave her abusive husband the grounds to have her committed. Alba becomes obsessed with the letters this woman wrote to her son up until her death in 1942, and enlists Oscar's help in delivering them to their intended recipient. Like Alba, the reader is moved by the woman's heart-wrenching story of her ability to enter "into the world of souls," and how she was unjustly taken from her children. Although one plot element is resolved a bit too conveniently, this is a haunting and mystical tale. Deborah DonovanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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“A sensitive effort from a talented writer.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“Touching [and] multilayered.” (BookPage)
“Carey is skilled at weaving the disparate elements of the narrative together to reach a satisfying ... resolution....recommended.” (Library Journal)