From a hardscrabble village in Nova Scotia to the collapsing trenches of France, a debut novel about a family divided by World War I. In the tradition of Robert Goolrick's A Reliable Wife and Karl Marlantes's Matterhorn, P. S. Duffy's astonishing debut showcases a rare and instinctive talent emerging in midlife. Her novel leaps across the Atlantic, between a father at war and a son coming of age at home without him.
When his beloved brother-in-law goes missing at the front in 1916, Angus defies his pacifist upbringing to join the war and find him. Assured a position as a cartographer in London, he is instead sent directly into the visceral shock of battle. Meanwhile, at home, his son, Simon Peter, must navigate escalating hostility in a fishing village torn by grief.
With the intimacy of The Song of Achilles and the epic scope of The Invisible Bridge, The Cartographer of No Man's Land offers a soulful portrayal of World War I and the lives that were forever changed by it, both on the battlefield and at home.
©2013 P. S. Duffy (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
"With warm, precise tones, David Marantz narrates this fascinating story. . . . Subtle characterizations force listeners to pay careful attention to the changing scenes, the horrors of war, and the long discussions about life. Marantz steadily weaves the two plots together in this heartrending story of the war to end all wars." (AudioFile)
This historical fiction of families living in Nova Scotia and involved with the Canadian Army during WWI, had a slow start and I was about to put it aside, but kept listening and was glad that I did. The book became better with each chapter. Although I wasn't interested in the battle descriptions, the characters were very real and believable.
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I had noticed this novel in the local bookstore and was intrigued by the jacket synopsis. Great character and plot development. The ending is somewhat surprising - a mix of disappointment, betrayal, rebirth and redemption. The narration was exceptional. Look forward to future novels.
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