19 March 2011

Book Review - The Boundless Deep by Kate Brallier

(Sorry this is review is a day late!!)

Though this book was published in 2008, don't underestimate the power of this story. It's one of those books that you keep and re-read. It is a love story that crosses the division of death into the realm of reincarnation. Set amidst the era of whaling in Nantucket, it is told superbly in first person narrative.

Liza has had dreams of whaling her whole life, despite never having been to the ocean. So she jumps at the chance to spend the summer working in Nantucket with her roommate and friend. She has the idea that somehow she can disprove how accurate her dreams are, but quite the opposite happens. Not only can she spout facts about sailing, she can identify even the most obscure piece of equipment. Her dreams have revved up a notch as well. Every night she dreams of Obidah Young, a whaling captain from the 1840’s accused of murdering his wife.

Liza’s summer in Nantucket is filled with work and romance. She meets Adam, a museum guide, who has his doubts about her reincarnation theory. There is also Lucian, who uses his sharp tongue to defuse the sexual tension between him and Liza. The book is filled with memorable characters that help Liza solve the mystery of her dreams and who she used to be.

Ms. Brallier does a great job of differentiating between Liza of 1840 and present day by changing how she “talks” in the dreams, from very formal to modern day slang. But beyond how well this story is brought together, what really captures the reader is Nantucket itself. The author really did her research on bringing to life the city of old. I wanted to jump in my car and drive there, finding all the spots she wrote about and pointed out.

This is one of those books that beautifully blends a mystery, a romance, a historical and a paranormal all in one. It makes you want to visit Nantucket and see if you can find your very own Obidah.

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