Dear Great Book Guru, My book group is looking for a meaningful novel to discuss - something topical but also with a strong story line. We will be meeting virtually and people have confessed to finding themselves easily distracted so we really need a compelling read. Help! Determined but Distracted
Dear Determined but Distracted, I have just the book for your group: SAINT X by Alexis Schaitkin. This debut novel opens in 1995 on an unnamed Caribbean Island. An affluent American family is taking their yearly island vacation to “beat the winter blues.” It is a familiar story of leisure-seeking, racism, poverty, wealth, and elitism… but a few pages into the book the teenage daughter is found dead on the beach. The remaining 335 pages detail the impact this death has on her parents, the resort workers, their families, the aging movie star who finds her, the girl’s college classmate, boyfriend, teacher, and especially her seven-year-old sister. The story jumps eighteen years and this young sister is now a fledgling book editor living in Brooklyn. As she is about to alight from a taxi, she notices the driver’s name - it is that of one of the men originally suspected to have been involved in her sister’s death. For the next six months, she obsessively insinuates herself into his life as she tries to learn the truth about the tragedy that shaped her life and the lives of so many. Highly recommended!