A Richard and Judy Summer 2013 Book Club pick.
The Sea Change by Joanna Rossiter is a haunting and moving novel about a mother and a daughter, caught between a tsunami and a war.
Yesterday was Alice's wedding day. She is thousands of miles away from the home she is so desperate to leave, on the southernmost tip of India, when she wakes in the morning to see a wave on the horizon, taller than the height of her guest house on Kanyakumari beach. Her husband is nowhere to be seen.
On the other side of the world, unhappily estranged from her daughter, is Alice's mother, Violet. Forced to leave the idyllic Wiltshire village, Imber, in which she grew up after it was requisitioned by the army during the Second World War, Violet is haunted by the shadow of the man she loved and the wilderness of a home that lies in ruins.
As Alice searches for her husband in the debris of the wave she is forced to face up to some truths about herself she has been hiding from. Meanwhile Violet is compelled to return to Imber to discover just why she abandoned her great love . . .
'The Sea Change' is an emotionally charged read that leaves your senses heightened, almost as if you are trapped within the pages. It tells the story of two events that are highly traumatic and affect one family.
Through past and present, mother and daughter share with us the traumatic experience that has and will change their lives forever.
At first I found it hard going to keep up with the flow of the story from past to present, but the poignancy of the story kept me reading.
Whilst I understood the need in Violets character to return to a place that had left her with so many traumatic memories, she wasn't a character that I overly liked.
Her daughters are complete opposites. Freda thought she was better than she was, the way she looked down her nose at others, had me despising her.
But Alice on the other hand was a fantastic character, a wannabe free spirit and her relationship with James was wonderful, they are perfect for each other.
Joanna Rossiter brings us a descriptive debut that will have you smelling the waves and feeling the hurt and angst of characters within, ride the waves of emotions with 'The Sea Change'