- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: Bloomsbury USA; 1st U.S. Ed edition (April 4, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1582344981
- ISBN-13: 978-1582344980
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 19 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,047,777 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Icebergs: A Novel Hardcover – April 4, 2006
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From Publishers Weekly
A plane crash in a remote area of Newfoundland during WWII leaves Canadian gunner Walt Dunmore to endure the oppressive cold along with his navigator, Alister Clark. Johns' moving debut is at first a gripping account of their quest for survival—intertwined with the stories of their young wives at home—but broadens to a multigenerational epic. When only Walt makes it back to Ontario, his life is forever linked with his comrade who died. The plot rushes forward to Chicago in 1967, where Walt, his wife, Dottie, and their sons, Sam and Charley, live near Alister's widow, Adele, and daughter, Caroline. Both because of and in spite of the bond between their fathers, Sam and Caroline have an affair, cut short by Sam's paranoid jealousy. He enlists and goes to Vietnam, but the family's tragic casualty occurs stateside. The retrospective final part of the novel opens on the characters' lives in 1999. With stark, lovely prose, Johns weaves a delicate tapestry of linked narratives, confirming that the paths not taken can be as significant as the ones taken. Like a ship navigating around an iceberg, "even near-misses leave a wake, an invisible breath that moves through the air." (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
As a young Canadian during World War II, Walt Dunmore is on a bombing mission when his plane is shot down over Newfoundland. Initially, only Walt and crew-mate Alister Clark survive the crash. But injuries and subzero weather take their toll, and Walt fails to keep Alistair alive. Walt returns home to his wife as a man recovering from the scars of war. The responsibility he felt toward Alister now extends to Alister's young widow and her baby girl. Together, both families move from their Canadian farming community to Chicago to begin a new life. The novel follows the fates of the Dunmores and the Clarks as they contend with an ever-changing world. As time passes and Walt's son becomes romantically involved with Alistair's daughter, old questions return like ghosts from the past and must be confronted as another war--Vietnam--strains the bonds of friendship and family. A deeply satisfying novel that shows how people--like icebergs--often reveal only 10 percent of themselves, while the rest remains hidden beneath the surface. Jerry Eberle
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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