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He Drown She in the Sea
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He Drown She in the Sea

3.57 of 5 stars 3.57  ·  rating details  ·  141 ratings  ·  14 reviews
Set on a fictional Caribbean island during World War II and in modern-day Vancouver, He Drown She in the Sea is the spellbinding story of two childhood friends reunited late in life. As children, Rose Sangha and her housekeeper's son, Harry, are inseparable, blissfully unaware of the subtleties of class hierarchy until the night Harry is banished from the Sangha home. When ...more
ebook, 336 pages
Published December 1st 2007 by Grove Press (first published November 30th 1975)
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This would have been a fine first draft for a novel. As it is, though, it should not have been published. I was never pulled in to the fictive dream because Ms. Mootoo never created one. She did, however, rely on dream sequences to begin and end her book, a sign of unbelievable laziness. And after my initial misgivings, things only got worse. Terrible dialect; I don't care if you're from Trinidad and you want to indicate that your characters don't speak standard British--there are subtler ways t ...more
Valerie Proctor
Now this is the kind of novel I like to read! Shani Mootoo is a great novelist. She catches dialogue and local accent very well but without wearing out the reader. Her main character, Harry, a middle –aged man is portrayed sympathetically, in-depth from his childhood as a poor servant’s son into the present as a garden designer in Vancouver. From the very beginning, because of the title, I was worried about who drown whom! I promise you, it was a surprise ending... Unfortunately, the ending alth ...more
The plot was there. But I couldn't be bothered to care about these characters and I found the Trinidadian dialect really distracting. I felt like none of these characters has their own voice nor created reasons for us to care about them.

plot is slow at the beginning and jumped too quickly to the past for the background, I just felt like the plot was based in longing and nostalgia of the past, the kind of feelings that I have had in the past with people that were just never emotionally there and although the two characters come together in the end, it is not something that I cherish in a relationship. why wait for someone? although rose's abusive husbands behavior comes to light in the end and in the beginning there are definite ...more
Aug 30, 2007 Sierra rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like to their romances intelligent and gripping
Oh man, I was late for work because I had to finish this book. The narrative jumps between Canada and the island of Guanagaspar, focusing in turn on Harry and Rose, childhood sweethearts who are separated by issues of class and propriety and returned to each other in their later years. Harry and Rose's history is delivered in an achronous fashion, so that moments from their childhoods are bumped up against recollections of a summer past, and again against memories of their estranged adolescences ...more
Alina Fabozzi
One of my favorite books I read in college. I really enjoyed the imagery, the Indian culture on the islands and the smooth transitions between time and space.

It's not too long and perfect for a week of magical reading.
This was a good book. I definitely wasn't as into it as Cereus Blooms at Night, but it was still good.

If you plan on reading this book, pay attention to Part I (three parts to this book). I found that when I got to Part III I was in a haze because the story line picked back up from Part I. Part II was a little boring, but towards the end, everything made sense. Definitely a good book.

Full review on my blog:
So far, so great. Written by a Trinidadian author who has spent a lot of time in North America -- so it feels very familiar to me.

Update: Not bad. The ending was a bit unbelievable and contrived, but still, a good book. Would recommend it to any of my Caribbean friends, or anyone interested in learning about life in the Caribbean.
Shivanee (Novel Niche)
No book of Shani Mootoo's has ever quite compared to the smouldering brilliance of 'Cereus Blooms At Night', and 'He Drown She in the Sea' is no exception. Despite that, Mootoo's storytelling talent has not diminished with this offering. Her places are authentically constructed; the voices of her characters are vivid and well-sustained.
Having really loved the Cereus Blooms, I hoped to love this. I did not. At all. It takes place very close to where I live, and it was vaguely nice to read descriptions of our coast. The plot, sadly, was quite shockingly bad, with one of the weakest endings I've read in a very long time. Shame.
Love story about two childhood friends who were separated by class on a Carribean island. He relocates to Vancouver, where they re-meet as adults. Entertaining, sweet.
This story took a turn I really didn't expect in the last section, but in the end I loved it.
All in all I enjoyed this novel. The middle dragged a little bit, but the end was wonderful.
set in the carribean, this book explored themes of race and class in an unusual setting.
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Shani Mootoo, writer, visual artist and video maker, was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1957 to Trinidadian parents. She grew up in Trinidad and relocated at age 24 to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. She currently lives in Toronto, Canada.
More about Shani Mootoo...
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