Author: Michael Hurley
Genre: Literary Fiction
From Michael Hurley, winner of the Somerset Prize for his debut novel, THE PRODIGAL, comes a complex and ambitious, allegorical tale of old money, young passion and ancient mystery in a classic New England seaside village.
Ten years after their college days together, three wounded and very different women reunite for a summer on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. As they come to grips with the challenges and crises in their lives, their encounter with a reclusive poacher known only as “the fisherman” threatens to change everything they believe about their world–and each other.
“Hurley writes beautifully,” says Kirkus Reviews, “especially when describing island and nautical life.” Publishers Weekly praises “his well-crafted prose.”
Dory, Turner and Charlotte were friends back in their college days. They're still friends now, but they've changed, and keep secrets from each other. In particular Charlotte, who came to the island for one purpose: to commit suicide and reunite with her deceased daughter. But Turner, struggling through divorce, hasn't had it easy either. She's still trying to answer the question who she is, and what her purpose in life is. Dory comes from old money, and is tied to all the responsibilities that come up with it, no matter how much she longs to be her own person.
The fisherman, a mysterious persona, shows up to 'help' them, and guide them along their path. But is the fisherman truly a helpful character, or is he something more sinister? Will they be able to overcome their troubles?
The book deals with spirituality, Catholicism in particular, with personal challenges, and with life on an island. I enjoyed the writing and characterization. All the characters had distinct personalities. The plot was good for the most part. I wasn't too fond of some of the sex scenes, since they held little feeling.