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Showing 1-10 of 106 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 166 reviews
on June 24, 2015
Despite the subject, I liked the beginning of the story. The history of the island was fascinating to me and the writing was beautiful. When I got half way through the book I had to stop. It lost it's story somehow - it had no strength anymore and it wasn't interesting. Would have loved to see more of a story to this book.
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on July 30, 2015
This book was INTENSE. I'm not so great with writing book reviews so bear with me (actually, this is my first one so maybe I'm a rockstar at it).
I read this for a book club over the summer because we wanted something tropical & written by a woman. It was difficult to get into at first but once the explicit sexual content unnerved me, it made me want to read more in order to gain my comfort back (good job, Ms. Yanique). I'm still not sure if I feel comfortable even at the end but I'm still thinking about the book. Like the ocean, this book ebbed and flowed, drowning me (see what I did there?) and then bringing me back up for air. The relationship between family, friends, lovers, expectations, status, race, America, made me question our culture and my own understanding of what is natural and Real.
Ms. Yanique did a wonderful job of speaking many voices throughout the novel. I take off one star because sometimes, certain nuances and details were more difficult to follow than I'd like. But that may have been a tool she used to get me, and others like me, to read the novel again. Too bad there are way too many books out there so I can't/won't prioritize it.
Overall, I would recommend this book to someone who is interested in the the history of the Virgin Islands and the blurred lines created by love and water.
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on January 1, 2016
I lived in the islands for a time. Taught school on St Croix in the 70's. Once I started this book, I was unable to let it go. Beautifully written! Do not let the negative comments turn you off. I have to read more by this author....what a writer!!
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on September 14, 2016
Magical realism at its finest. Some of the lines in this book were so heartbreakingly beautiful I couldn't help but read them over and over again. The beauty and magic in this novel, however, is fleshed out with characters who are, despite their supernatural gifts, are ultimately very human and whose struggles and triumphs are relatable on multiple levels. An illuminating read about the history of a place we so often think of as simply a tourist destination.
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on January 3, 2017
This book is difficult to rate with these descriptors! The pleasure of reading this book by a Caribbean author of a Caribbean island story comes from my having lived in the Caribbean for several years. Island nations have similar histories and stories. This one is told from the point of view of two very different sisters in the vernacular of thier island of St Thomas.
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on September 1, 2014
This is a fantastic novel - and an important one, because there's not enough literature from the USVI. Yanique is a voice to watch - smart, sharp, hard-edged but lyrical. She made me love characters I didn't think I could care about, and understand them even as they were doing the craziest, most annoying things. She is a great storyteller, and a great stylist - a pleasure to read.
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on October 23, 2014
Recurring incest made this book a turn-off to me. I had hoped for a read something like "A Small Island", which I found very engaging, but was very disappointed in "Land of Love and Drowning" and would not recommend it.
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on August 6, 2014
Good concept. It could have been a good story, BUT, too ghoulish. ALL main characters were crazy, morally bankrupt or clueless and, in my opinion, for no reason required by the storyline. Author offered too little explanation for Eeona's mental weakness, her sister's mental weakness, father's mental imbalance, Rebekka, etc., etc. Story was too choppy with reader having too much responsibility for weaving together major facts that would give coherence to the novel. I kept asking myself, "what's the significance of this fact"? The "obeah" folks. The hoof-footed folks. How did those factors impact on the characters' lives? I got no satisfactory answer. Moreover, the Ms Yanique could have helped to connect the history of the African diaspora in Virgin Islands and U.S., but she did a poor job of helping people understand the similarity and dissimilarity in the issues that people of African descent experienced when the Slave Trade dropped them off in the new world. A missed opportunity!!
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on September 13, 2014
Haven't finished the book yet -- but love its changing points of view, use of local patois versus "correct English", and its picture of the 20th century USVI through the eyes of two unforgettable female characters.
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on December 2, 2014
Loved the book all the way to the ending. At the end the book just hurried along without any meaningful insights to the characters. Dropped off so quickly that it left me frustrated.
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