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3.65  ·  Rating Details  ·  119 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
Summoned to the deathbed of a long-ago lover, Evelyn is overcome by emotion. Off her medications, she impulsively steals a kayak and embarks on a quest that takes her deep into the Canadian wilderness in order to find her lost son, Tom. On the way to Sointula, a remote fishing village off Vancouver Island, she gains a traveling companion, Peter Gore, a writer working on th
Hardcover, 452 pages
Published September 27th 2004 by Raincoast Books (first published August 28th 2004)
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(showing 1-30 of 226)
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Living as I do on the west coast in the environment of this book, it was easy to immerse myself in its moody atmosphere and meandering pace. Even my dislike of one of the central characters did not undermine for me the subtle brilliance of the writing and the deft handling of structure.

Evelyn abandoned her reckless past for a staid life buffeted by prestige and anti- depressants.
The book details her reawakening to life as she searches for her son in the wilderness.

this is first impressions afte
Mar 16, 2010 Billy rated it really liked it
I really liked this book though it took a long while for it to grab me. At first, the principal characters aren’t likable at all, and it appears the novel is going nowhere. However, gradually, I got sucked in, and loved it.

It’s a quirky story. A middle aged woman from Ontario leaves her home to come to the deathbed of a former lover in Vancouver. Once there, she stays on (incommunicado with her husband, and almost penniless) for a journey to find her estranged son who is volunteer whale research
May 29, 2010 Bonny rated it really liked it
At times a bit tedious to read, some passages could be shortened or left out altogether. This book is about a woman who takes control of her mental health by leaving her comfortable life and her medications behind and breaking out of a sort of 'prison', which kept her numb and unaware for years.

She sets out on a journey to find her estranged son whoo is living and working on the remote west coast. Her journey is a sort rediscovery of who she is and how she is able to react and interact with oth
Evelyn, married to the mayor of Oakville, ON and on major anti-depressants, receives word that her first love, Claude (rhymes with load, not plod), is dying in hospital in Victoria, BC. She drops everything and rushes to Claude's beside. Before he dies, Claude lets Evelyn know that their son, Tommy, is living of the north end of Vancouver Island, after recovering for a rather severe injury. Claude's ultimate death sets Evelyn on a journey to see her son.

Without any of her possessions, other than
Oct 11, 2009 Phae rated it liked it
Sointula, a Finnish-Canadian settlement in the Gulf Coast at the northern end of Vancouver Island, is like lands-end, the furthest reaches of civilization before people fall into the Pacific. It is also place where Tom lives—Tom, the disturbed son of Evelyn and Claude. Evelyn left him and the remnants of her former life far behind to marry a mayor in southern Ontario, and find herself surrounded by comfort and security. When she learns of Claude's death, she undergoes a breakdown, and finds hers ...more
Bill Baker
Aug 04, 2015 Bill Baker rated it it was ok
Didn't finish. A bit boring and hard to follow
Mar 21, 2016 Geraldine rated it really liked it
I have to read more of Bill Gaston because I really enjoyed this book.
Aug 24, 2014 AJ rated it it was ok
Very well-written, often beautifully crafted. However the first two-thirds was just not particularly interesting and lacked the type of tension that would keep me reading in any sustained fashion. I remained indifferent to all three of the central characters pretty much through the entire book. While the paced definitely picked up over the last 150 pages, I was really hoping that the ending would have been more satisfying.
Jul 28, 2011 Cheryl rated it really liked it
Shelves: canadian, fiction
“Fog disgorges a yacht, which overtakes and passes their kayak. A monstrous kitchen applicance, too-white fibreglass and chrome. In a fog-held world, nature quietly pure, here comes a fat plastic condo. An outsize American flag hangs off its wide-ass end, which rumbles and farts and bubbles.” (P 175)
Aaaahhh, what a pleasure….
Sep 21, 2007 Janice rated it really liked it
set on Vancouver Island ... dear to my heart because that's where I live now

Sointula is a Finnish word mean "place of harmony" ... a small village on the northwestern tip of Vancouver Island, settled in 1901 by Finnish immigrants.

I posted an entry on my Reading Diary blog
Lynn Bornath
Feb 11, 2010 Lynn Bornath rated it really liked it
I don't know that I would want to spend time with any of the characters but I was cheering for each of them to find some kind of peace. Read the full review.
May 02, 2007 Heidi rated it liked it
It was well written, the story line was unbelievable at times, but overall a unique book. I was drawn to the characters and the wonderful descriptions by the author.
Oct 17, 2011 Reid marked it as to-read
M & D
Raney rated it it was ok
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Excessive detail 1 1 May 17, 2015 07:01PM  
What's The Name o...: SOLVED. Woman kayaker searches for her son [s] 9 20 Jun 19, 2014 10:39AM  
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