2012: 53. The Seduction of Water

"My favorite story when I was small, the one I begged for night after night, was 'The Selkie.'"

The Seduction of Water, Carol Goodman

I bought this (and a few other paperbacks that might slowly percolate through this blog) at this fantastic used bookstore near my parents house.*  I had read a bunch of Goodman a while ago, and I guess she's written a few more since I read out her oeuvre, so I picked this (and one other) up.   She writes the kind of novels that I am absolute sucker for - a woman figuring out a mystery from the past, with consequences for today! They aren't mysteries in the classic sense - more history is a mystery, though a little suspense is usually thrown in at the end.  Ruth Rendell, when she writes as Barbara Vine is the absolute queen of this sort of thing - A Dark Adapted Eye, The Chimney Sweeps' Boy, Anna's Book.  Goodman is only ok, honestly, but I can't get enough of this sort of thing - that's what happens when you grow up on Agatha Christie, and reading your grandmother's Mary Higgens Clark, I guess - so she'll do in a pinch.  Plus, her books are often set in upstate New York, and have a nice atmosphere, even if the ends usually seem a bit rushed and silly.

This one is about Iris, who is in a rut, to say the least - ABD (that's all but dissertation), in a long terms routine-y relationship, in a terrible job, Iris is stuck.  But when she writes a story about ther mother, a science fiction writer who died under sad circumstances, her life starts to change.  Her mother's literary agent says that there may be another novel out there, and Iris starts to really look into her mother's past.  Trouble, of course, ensues.  If I had a criticism of the book, I thought that the mystery was enough without adding the woman in danger stuff (I know this is vauge, but I don't want to give the plot away too much).  I don't really care for that sort of thing - and, oh, the outcome was so devastating.   But it was definitely an entertaining read, and I'm sure I'll read more Goodman when I come upon it.  (Not counting the one I already read but haven't blogged about yet!)

Categories:  Fiction 

*In case you are someone who lives near my parents, it is that tremendously big one over by Chucky Cheese's in Danvers.

© Carrie Dunsmore 2017