Hmmm. How to describe this book... This is a story of four siblings, Esch, Randall, Skeetah, and Junior, living in coastal Mississippi during the days immediately preceding hurricane Katrina and a few days after. The book spans about 12 days. The father figure in the story is pretty distant and removed from his children. Skeetah has a prized pit bull named China who is having puppies when the story opens, and 15 year old Esch has just found out that she is pregnant. There are some pretty disturbing themes in this book that I won't mention but this story is very well written. I really enjoyed this. Once I started this book, I couldn't put it down.
I almost put this book away after reading the first couple of chapters, but since the writing was better than just OK, I kept on going. I'm glad I did. I wound up liking the book so much on so many levels that I'm thinking of presenting it to my book club for one of our readings. There are many aspects to this poor, black, rural family and their story that beg to be discussed and analyzed. The story is a fictional slice of life based upon actual events, and the writing turned out to be excellent. This is not a pretty book and it does not have a happy ending, but then, the main character is Hurricane Katrina who doesn't even appear until the last chapter. This is a serious book that deserves to be read, discussed and remembered.
Salvage the Bones is an unflinching story of Southern, rural, black, poverty told through the eyes of a young black girl that most of us would probably write off.
Jesmyn Ward has written a beautiful and terrible account of daily survival in the poor, rural South and then intoduced Hurricane Katrina to the mix. Interwoven is the myth of Medea as Esch, the narrator, comes to understand it's relevance to her life. Lyrical and metaphorical on so many levels; as a human - you should read it.