Sunday, April 3, 2011

Day 9: Island Beneath the Sea (Sun 3/27)

This is my third book for the challenge and I am really excited to finally be reading it. Since I have been having trouble keeping up the blog again I will probably combine some of the posts for this book together so that I can get all caught up!

Island Beneath the Sea by Isabel Allende is a book that I have been wanting to read for quite some time. Last year for my birthday my husband bought me the book and tickets to go see Isabel Allende do a reading of this book. One of my friends came too and it was a really fun experience. It was the second time that I have seen Allende and I love listening to her stories and have found that she is a very funny lady. I wish that I could give specifics about what was so funny that she said or did, but it was almost a year ago and right now I just remember that she was funny! Before going to this event I had no idea what the book was about, but when Allende started talking about it I really was interested. I didn't read it right away because I got busy doing other things and then started reading other books. Then I got my Kindle and that was my preference to read. I finally decided that I would read this book because I really want to read one of her books again since I love her style of writing and she is one of my favorite authors.

Allende told us that this book came about because she was visiting New Orleans and she loved the place and culture and decided that she wanted to write a book that took place there. As she was doing her research, which she did a lot of, she found out that New Orleans history had a lot to do with Haiti. She then started researching Haiti and decided that that was where her story would start. Below is a description of the book from the publisher's website

Born a slave on the island of Saint-Domingue, Zarité -- known as Tété -- is the daughter of an African mother she never knew and one of the white sailors who brought her into bondage. Though her childhood is one of brutality and fear, Tété finds solace in the traditional rhythms of African drums and in the voodoo loas she discovers through her fellow slaves.

When twenty-year-old Toulouse Valmorain arrives on the island in 1770, it’s with powdered wigs in his baggage and dreams of financial success in his mind. But running his father’s plantation, Saint Lazare, is neither glamorous nor easy. It will be eight years before he brings home a bride -- but marriage, too, proves more difficult than he imagined. And Valmorain remains dependent on the services of his teenaged slave.

Spanning four decades, Island Beneath the Sea is the moving story of the intertwined lives of Tété and Valmorain, and of one woman’s determination to find love amid loss, to offer humanity though her own has been battered, and to forge her own identity in the cruellest of circumstances.

Happy Reading!

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