Saturday, June 30

Book Review: Rockbound


Title: Rockbound

Author: Frank Parker Day

Pages: 292

Summary: To the harsh domain of Rockbound -- governed by the sternly righteous and rapacious Uriah Jung --comes the youthful David Jung to claim his small share of the island. Filled with dreamy optimism and a love for the unspoken promises of the night sky, David tries to find his way in a narrow, unforgiving, and controlled world. His conflicts are both internal and external, locking him in an unceasing struggle for survival; sometimes the sea is his enemy, sometimes his own rude behavior, sometimes his best friend Gershom Born, sometimes his secret love for the island teacher Mary Dauphiny; but always, inevitably, his Jung relatives and their manifold ambitions for money and power.

The balance of life on Rockbound is precarious and thus fiercely guarded by all who inhabit its lonely domain, but just as a sudden change in the direction of the wind can lead to certain peril at sea, so too can the sudden change in the direction of a man's heart lead to a danger altogether unknown.

My Rating: 8/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: A well written book, that did a fantastic job at exploring the lives of a fishing colony on a small island in Nova Scotia. I can see why it won the Canada Reads award, it may not have been completely gripping for me, but the writing and development was well done, and I can definitely see a lot of readers enjoying the story.

The author does a fantastic job at creating a very realistic atmosphere of the small fishing island in Nova Scotia. He writes about the harshness of the sea and the lives of a fisherman. I didn't find it to be in an insulting way, but believable. He didn't romanticize it, but made it real. The characters were also incredibly well done, I can't say I have a favourite, character, or one that stayed with me after I finished the book, but the author wrote very fleshed out characters. Very believable, and shows how seclusion on a small island, with little resources and opportunities can affect the characters.

What I didn't like, it wasn't a big issue for me, but fishing and the life around it, wasn't very interesting to me. But, even in this case, it wasn't a big deal for me. I think the biggest issue for me was I didn't have a character I truly cared about. Otherwise, I thought the book was great, it's not something I'd normally read, but I'm glad I tried it.

Would I recommend it to read: I  would.  It was a interesting read it was a random pick for me out of the Canada Reads Winners from past years. Not something I'd have read if it weren't from a reading challenge, but well worth the risk.

What to read next: The Shipping News, The Colony of Unrequited Dreams, Works by David Adam Richards



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