Author: Rachael Preston
Publish Date: August 19, 2012
Source: I received a copy from the author; however, this did not affect my review.
Why You're Reading This Book:
- You're a fiction fan.
- You like stories about dysfunctional families.
From Goodreads.com: "There’s a power to be mined in keeping secrets.
1930. The boathouse community of Cootes Paradise is under siege. The squatters’ colony of shacks that lines the shores of Dundas Marsh stands in the way of a Hamilton politician’s City Beautiful plans. When a handsome drifter settles there, Egypt Fisher and her mother both fall under his spell. No one expects Egypt’s gambling con-man father to return after a six-year absence, not even the local mafia. But he does and he’s furious."
My Two Cents:
By now, you guys probably know that I like dysfunctional family stories. "The Fishers of Paradise" definitely falls firmly in the dysfunctional family camp. The Fishers are a mess. Laura, the mother, is just trying to scrape by. Her husband, Ray, is totally an absentee father. He's also very mean and controlling. Egypt, the daughter, is almost grown and is only beginning to realize the secrets that her family has hidden from her. Aiden is much younger and isn't ready to make sense of everything everyone in his family is or is not doing.
The family lives in a small Canadian town in the 1930s where everyone is sort of struggling in their own ways. Everyone in their town lives in houseboats, which I thought was really cool. I had never heard of Cootes Paradise before I read this book but it seems like a really interesting place. I always enjoy armchair traveling.
There wasn't really any one character that I liked in the book, except for maybe Aiden. Laura has made some really bad choices in her life and doesn't seem to learn that it's not too late for her to do things differently to better support her children. I found myself getting very frustrated at her. I really wanted her to change and start making some more mature decisions instead of running away. Ray just did not do anything for me. Again, he never really wised up and matured. Egypt seemed a lot younger than she was supposed to be in the book. I really wish that we could have seen her acting a little more like the almost adult she is supposed to be! I think that I would have liked her character a little bit better then!
This book was written in the third person, present tense point of view, which made for a very interesting reading experience for me. I think this can be a really hard point of view to write in. It took me awhile to get used to it; at first, it felt very clunky. There were a couple occasions where the point of view changed, which kind of took me out of the book.
The writing itself is good. Even though I did not care for many of the characters, Preston had a great way of making you feel for these characters who were in really tough situations. I definitely appreciated that.