Review: Come Sunday

Come Sunday will be released in paperback late summer (August 2010). If you liked Change of Altitude (written by Anita Shreve) you will enjoy this book.

From authors website: Isla Morley grew up in South Africa during apartheid, the child of a British father and fourth-generation South African mother. During the country’s State of Emergency, she graduated from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in Port Elizabeth with a degree in English Literature.

By 1994 she was one of the youngest magazine editors in South Africa, but left career, country and kin when she married an American and moved to California. For more than a decade she pursued a career in non-profit work, focusing on the needs of women and children.

She has lived in some of the most culturally diverse places of the world, including Johannesburg, London and Honolulu. Now in the Los Angeles area, she shares a home with her husband, daughter, two cats, a dog and a tortoise.

Synopsis from Publishers Weekly: In her poignant first novel, former South African magazine editor Morley explores a mother's grief. Abbe Deighton, part-time journalist and full-time wife and mother, finds herself living in Hawaii with her preacher husband, Greg, and precocious three-year-old daughter, Cleo, thousands of miles from her South African birthplace. Her flight from an abusive father and complicit mother is not accidental-her poet brother also fled to America-and when Cleo is killed in a car accident, Abbe re-examines the choices that have brought her so far from home. She and her husband become estranged as he turns to God and forgives the man who killed their daughter while Abbe descends into self-pity and anger at the unfairness of life. Their marriage suffers and Greg loses his job, forcing Abbe to turn homeward for financial help. Upon returning to South Africa, she confronts the ghosts of her family's past and the reality of her homeland's future. Morley convincingly depicts a grief-stricken woman without resorting to clich├ęs, and though she telegraphs the resolution of Abbe's plight early on, the storytelling, line by line, is rather beautiful. (June)

Type: Fiction, 336 pages, Hardcover

Quick Take: This is a beautifully written story, written with such care. Abby is a sad woman who loses her daughter in the second chapter of this novel. Paralyzed with grief, her life begins to change and depending on the ‘situation’ she may or may not care to participate – she simply can’t function. The story is written with flashbacks which help Abby discover a family secret. The book leaves you satisfied and the end to perfect for this book.

Click here to watch a brief author video, read interviews and discussion questions.

Source: Review copy

5 comments

  1. This sounds great. I'm normally a little bit squeamish about stories where children pass away, but your review makes it sound very good. Looking forward to it...

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  2. Kristi, This book with really well written, the pace is slow and steady but it works for this book. Grief can be a long, painful process.

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  3. Sounds good! I have Change of Altitude here. If I like it, I'll look for Come Sunday.

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  4. Oh, this sounds good. Glad you enjoyed it.

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  5. Mari...this sounds so good. I own it (still unread)...I'm pathetic, I know.

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