Dear Great Book Guru, I was at an annual gathering of friends: “The Beat the Winter Blues Gala” last week. While we were dining and chatting, someone brought up a new book she had read- set in sunny Greece about a missing person, but she insisted it was not a mystery. It sounded interesting… any thoughts? Seeker of the Sun
Dear Seeker of the Sun, Yes, all of us could use some sunshine around now, but I’m afraid you won’t find it in Katie Kitamura’s A SEPARATION. This is a dark novel set in London and southern Greece. The unnamed narrator has been separated from her husband Christopher for over six months. She has little knowledge of his life but is aware he has had many affairs throughout their marriage. His mother, an ardent supporter of Christopher and our narrator’s nemesis, reluctantly reaches out to her when he stops returning calls. Surprised the mother does not know of the separation, the narrator maintains the secrecy and heads out to the luxurious hotel resort where Christopher is staying. The remainder of this short novel teases us with clues about his life and possible end. Throughout, Kitamura offers us an study on what separates little lies and great betrayals, legal and personal misdeeds, and ultimately, the need to know and the need to protect. The beauty of Greece shines through this novel but there is no sunshine for its characters. Recommended!