My apologies that though I finished this by the 31st of March (the last day of the Take Control Of Your TBR Pile 2013 reading challenge) it is only now that I'm posting my review of ......
DRY SEASON by DAN SMITH.
On the banks of a sprawling Brazilian river lies the frontier town of Sao Tiago - the perfect place for a fallen priest to escape his past and care for nothing. But when Sam chooses to help a stranger who lies bleeding on a dirt floor, he sets in motion a dangerous chain of events.
Falling under the gaze of the dead man's employer, the formidable Catarina Da Silva, Sam's quiet life turns to one of manipulation and murder, and as the long dry season stretches out ahead, he realises that in a place where life is cheap, love can be deadly. And when the heavens finally open, he must face his past if he is to find redemption in a town without a soul.
..... Outer back cover.
FIRST SENTENCE (Chapter 1): It was late, and I was dreaming of fire when she came banging on my door.
MEMORABLE MOMENT (Page 14): He'd sit at the unwashed table, slicing tomatoes and cucumbers, cutting them even thinner than his conscience.
MY THOUGHTS: A debut novel from local author Dan Smith, though marketed as a thriller to me Dry Season is much more a story of relationships, of hope and redemption, the characters every bit as important as the plot.
OK so there was a thriller-ish element to the book but, very slow burning, in my opinion it was very much secondary to the rest of the story, the 'star' of which for me was undoubtedly the atmosphere created by Dan Smith, his portrayal of man's inhumanity/humanity towards man.
Set in the mid-nineteen eighties in a village situated on the banks of a Brazilian perhaps one of the things I appreciated most about the book was the way in which the struggles of the characters were played out in a very matter of fact, dare I say restrained way that made the whole story seem all the more poignant ensuring that it had a huge emotional impact on me.
An enjoyable enough read, obviously a master story teller in the making, like the fishing which is frequently mentioned throughout, the author expertly reels the reader in.
KEEP IT OR NOT?: Received at an event to promote local authors, I feel it is only fair to share this with the other members of my Readers Group.
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