Gloria Bernal's Reviews > Rescue

Rescue by Anita Shreve
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's review
Jan 02, 11

Read from December 29 to 31, 2010

I'm a Shreve fan and she has some wonderful things out there. The subject matter here, as well as the author's talent drew me to this. I like reading about men in this profession, having been married to one myself for many years now. This takes place in rural Vermont, different from city rescue situations, but the "rescuers" themselves are usually pretty decent people who care, and as a reader one can't help but like Webster, the main character in this novel. He loves what he does, is a decent young man and he has a good relationship and respect for his parents and they in turn for him. You like and care for this family.

This actually is more about dealing with alcoholism and the effects it has on a relationship, and the familial circle. Webster does his job well and wants to rescue everyone, but is unable to rescue his own wife emotionally from her demons. He is just a good person trying to do the right thing, and sometimes just not knowing how. This novel flits back and forth past to present... from when he first met his wife as a young rookie, rescuing her in a drunk-driving accident, to the present which is 18 years later and the daughter he has raised alone is showing the same tendencies.

All in all it kept my interest, but it wasn't anything I just had to get back to. Dealing with alcoholism isn't a pleasant subject, having been there myself once in my first marriage (not to my fireman) so I found it frustrating for poor Webster and it saddened me, remembering how difficult it can be to protect your children from the danger.

In my opinion, this wasn't her best writing... yet better than her last one. I did enjoy the read. The ending was anti-climatic, but left you feeling hopeful for this small family. 3.5 star rating.

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