Tuesday, August 11th
by Julia Phillips
This month's discussion will be held online. Please contact email@example.com if you would like to participate.
*Starred Review* The volcano-spiked Kamchatka Peninsula in Far East Russia, where the tundra still supports herds of reindeer and the various Native groups who depend on them, is the evocative setting of Phillips’ accomplished and gripping episodic novel. In the region's largest city, Petropavlovsk-Kamschatsky, Russians are disparaging of Natives and migrant workers, and nearly everyone struggles with limited means and options. That’s why researcher Oksana notices the clean, new car carrying a man and two young, bird-boned Russian girls and reports her sighting when news breaks that two sisters, living with their single mother, a journalist, are missing. This abduction forms the hub of Phillips’ atmospheric drama of shock and despair, each radiating spoke the story of a woman affected by the painful mystery, including a customs officer, a detective’s lonely wife, a student, and the head of a village cultural center whose 18-year-old daughter has also vanished. In fresh and unpredictable scenes depicting broken friendships and failed marriages, strained family gatherings, drunken sauna parties, a camping trip, and rehearsals of a Native dance troupe, Phillips’ spellbinding prose is saturated with sensuous nuance and emotional intensity as she subtly traces the shadows of Russia’s past and illuminates today's daunting complexities of gender and identity, expectations and longing. Copyright 2019 Booklist Reviews. -Booklist
Where: Howe Library
Room: Currently meeting online.
Time: 12:00 - 1:00