Gillian's Reviews > The Lake of Dreams

The Lake of Dreams by Kim Edwards
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Oct 29, 11

Read from October 27 to 28, 2011

“It took me back to a night when I was seventeen, wild and restless, sliding off the back of Keegan Fall’s motorcycle, apple blossoms as pale as stars above us.”
This sentence from chapter one contains everything I liked and disliked about Kim Edward’s The Lake of Dreams. The imagery of a spring night, white apple blossoms reflecting moonlight, restless youth, all that riding on the back of a motorcycle brings to mind, is an example of Edward’s beautiful use of language, but I stumbled on Keegan Fall’s, despite the apostrophe, at first reading I thought she was sliding down a water fall and it took a reread to realize this is the narrator’s teenage boyfriend.
It took me back is repeated over and over throughout this novel, which makes sense, I guess, since the story is of a young woman returning to her childhood home, but after a few chapters it becomes too much. While the unexamined life may not be worth living, the over examined life sure gets tedious.
The story line is interesting, a young woman still dealing with the loss of her father from a tragic accident 10 years earlier returns home and uncovers a branch of the family that had been hidden. There is suspense but it is dragged out. The story just seems to go all over the place, environmentalism, woman’s suffrage, family dynamics and non-stop reflection. Much of the story is revealed through letters, much of its meaning through dreams, both literary devices I’m not fond of – it seems like a cheating way to reveal a story. Multiple motifs – Haley’s Comet, water, boats, flowers, and more, clutter up the story. I would recommend this to anyone that reads for beautiful prose. If you’re looking for a good story, it is in here but the pace is so slow you might fall asleep on the way.

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