Sunday, March 9, 2008

Crow Lake


I don't know about you, but many times I have associated a book with a color. Subconsciously. Happy cheerful books are bright yellow, sad depressing books are usually various tones of gray (depending on the extent of "darkness" in the book). Some books, I just don't feel any color. Some how, even before I finished the prologue of this book, a color came to my mind and stuck with me till the end of the book. The color was a mossy green. Don't ask me why. It might have been due to the fact that so much of the book revolved around ponds and lakes.. or maybe the story line which was neither too "bright" nor too "dark".. whatever, but the story still is mossy green to me.
Crow Lake by Mary Lawson was a chance find. I picked it up at a friend's place and had no introduction to it whatsoever. So i took the page 69 test and I knew that the book was a sure yes! the page 69 test most certainly works!! I started reading it before I went to bed last night and I did go to bed, but only after completion of the book. It definitely was a well written book.
The book is set in a small community around a lake (crow lake) in the northern wilderness of Canada - hence the name of the book. In a small community, your business is everyone's business and everyone's business is your business. Hence, this book is not only the story of a single family..but the story of the community as a whole. The Morrison family is a family of 6..actually, 7. Dad, Mom, Luke, Matt, Kate and Bo and in my opinion, great-grandma as well. Though she is no longer alive and has never even seen the Morrison kids, she continues to live on as a part of the family as apparent in the very first paragraph of the book.
Crow Lake is a very eloquent book covering many aspects of life - the main theme being that nothing in life is ever certain. You can plan as much as you want, but life has its own way of springing surprises at you when you least expect them. Some are pleasant, many aren't. But you have to deal with them anyway.
I can go on writing about various aspects of the book that appealed to me. It is a very long list. I think the emotions and reactions in the book are very real and very understandable. Kate's hero worship of Matt turning into disappointment, the optimism of Luke, the fights between Luke and Matt.
The best part of the book, however, is the ending. Without letting too much out of the bag, I can say that it is the best example of how looking from "outside" the problem can sometimes reveal the simplest solution. Sometimes, the best people to solve a family crisis are those that are outsiders who don't even know the family too well..
how true!
This is truly an amazing book and you should pick it up if you ever get a chance.. and let me know what you think!!:)