April 21st, 2018

spock: logic is sexy

Book Review: Salvage the Bones

Title: Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward

Genre: Literary fiction

The story: Esch is a 15-year-old African-American girl who lives in desperate poverty in the deep south. Each of her family members is on a desperate quest for hope and escape, whether by breeding prize-winning pit bulls, winning the love of a neighborhood boy, or hanging onto the memories of a dead mother. Each of the characters tries to go on living a normal life with Hurricane Katrina on the horizon, ready to shatter everything they know.

My review: My enjoyment of the book suffered because the jacket copy set me up for a different story from what I got. I expected it to be an entire novel about preparing for and surviving a hurricane, with each character trying to hold onto whatever gives them hope. It is actually about 75% about the characters' day-to-day lives with a hurricane at the end. The writing is gorgeous, and the main character is achingly human, so I think I would have liked the book if the story line hadn't been misrepresented. As it was, I kept getting impatient for the hurricane and the suspense it promised. Read the book if you want to witness a slice of life that's probably very different from your own. Do not read it if you want to read a daring tale of surviving a natural disaster.