Monday, July 21, 2008

The Thin Place - Kathryn Davis

2006, 275 pages. Genre : Fiction, American Literature. Overall Rating : A-..Kathyrn Davis' 6th novel examines a cross-section of humanity in a bevy of people (and a number of animals) in a town steeped in Americana.
What's To Like...
    This book is hard to characterize. It's about three girls/friends coming of age; but it's not Chick-Lit. It's about one of those girls being able to bring people and animals back to life; but that's really just incidental to the story.

.It gives the hyperactive, mischievous thoughts of dogs; it has a resolute beaver that never loses hope even when caught in a trap; and there's a feline who tests the saying, "Curiosity kills the cat". But this isn't Dr. Doolittle. It has a 92-year-old lady still full of life, but this isn't On Golden Pond.
What's Not To Like...
There's not much of a plot. It's more of a snapshot of a small New Englandesque town (although the exact location of it is never really given). With about 50 pages to go, things start to build towards a climax, but even that is anticlimactic. If you're seeking for swashbuckling action, look elsewhere.

.There are a lot people who, for some reason, expected The Thin Place to have a spiritualistic overtone - good-vs.evil; demons & angels; etc. True, there's a bit of that here, but this is more mystical than metaphysical.

.Finally, this is not an easy read. The story demands your full attention, as it swirls from one being to another in almost random fashion. Clive Cussler fans should avoid this one at all costs.
Overall Rating : A-.  There's no middle ground. You'll either love The Thin Place, or give it up after 50 pages. It reminds me of Waiting For Godot, but instead of witty dialogue to substitute for a plot, Ms. Davis treats you to some beautiful writing. This is an excellent book for a quiet evening with New Age music playing in the background. But don't try to read it while watching TV.

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