Special Feature: The Northern Reach by W.S. Winslow

There is something about the rugged wildness of the coastline that adds so much atmosphere to a book. While I love the calming languid waters of the tropical islands, there is something so much more dramatic about a rocky untamed coast. This book is set on the Maine coast and that is one of the reasons this book caught my eye.

The other reason this one sounds so captivating is that it sounds like a pensive book that will give readers pause and reflect on their lives and the complexity of family and location. I think it’s going to offer a unique perspective for readers and give them something to think about and discuss.

This book spans a number of years and I am curious to see how that plays out. It starts in 1907 and continues through 2017 in a town where everyone is related on one way or another. I think that’s going to be an interesting angle and I am really excited to check this one out and see how it comes together, plus it’s been receiving solid positive reviews. It is out now and I can’t wait to read it later this spring!

Summary

A heart-wrenching first novel about the power of place and family ties, the weight of the stories we choose to tell, and the burden of those we hide

Frozen in grief after the loss of her son at sea, Edith Baines stares across the water at a schooner, under full sail yet motionless in the winter wind and surging tide of the Northern Reach. Edith seems to be hallucinating. Or is she? Edith’s boat-watch opens The Northern Reach, set in the coastal town of Wellbridge, Maine, where townspeople squeeze a living from the perilous bay or scrape by on the largesse of the summer folk and whatever they can cobble together, salvage, or grab.

At the center of town life is the Baines family, land-rich, cash-poor descendants of town founders, along with the ne’er-do-well Moody clan, the Martins of Skunk Pond, and the dirt farming, bootlegging Edgecombs. Over the course of the twentieth century, the families intersect, interact, and intermarry, grappling with secrets and prejudices that span generations, opening new wounds and reckoning with old ghosts.

W. S. Winslow’s The Northern Reach is a breathtaking debut about the complexity of family, the cultural legacy of place, and the people and experiences that shape us. (summary from Goodreads)

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