We Were the Salt of the Sea by Roxanne Bouchard


We Were the Salt of the Sea by Roxanne Bouchard

Translated by David Warriner

Congratulations Karen Sullivan and Orenda Books, yet again you keep delivering some of the best books of the year and here with We Were the Salt of the Sea by Roxanne Bouchard is another example. To start with, the cover is just incredible it is eye catching and also ties in with the storyline. I just love this book. When I head to the sea in the summer this book is coming with me it needs to be read with the smell of the sea and wind in your hair. The writing is just incredible it sails beautifully, as Roxanne Bouchard describes the landscape and the sea. You can almost taste the salty sea air as you read the amazing prose.



More a crime and also a mystery novel that I think makes this book stand out. Set in Canada and in the sleepy fishing village of Gaspé Peninsula. Catherine Day has left her home in Montreal to this fishing village to try and find her mother but a dead woman identified as Marie Garant is pulled from the sea. Now Detective Sergeant Joaquin Morales new to the area has to solve the mystery of the death of Marie Garant. A woman who was beautiful yet both liked and also mistrusted by the local fishing community, and a death at sea always shakes the village but the death of Marie Garant has rocked this sleepy fishing village.

For Catherine Day who is seeking to find her mother, she soon realises that all is not well as the locals seem to have taken a dislike to her mother. But Catherine is looking for something more than just her mother, she is looking to find something else answers deep within herself she seems a soul lost. There was something about Catherine that I really liked and just the way that Roxanne Bouchard creates characters and brings then alive, to me really makes this a stand out novel. Character creation in any novel is really important and Roxanne seems to have found a way of weaving a story of the sea and clever interplay between them.

This may be a crime and a mystery novel but here is a book that actually really got to me, at times I was so consumed by the writing and also the story really touched me. The story flows like a calm sea and the translation by David Warriner is just outstanding. We Were the Salt of the Sea is another Orenda Books success story. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

300 Pages.

Thank you Karen Sullivan for the advanced review copy of We Were the Salt of the Sea.

We Were the Salt of the Sea by Roxanne Bouchard is published by Orenda Books and is published on 30th March and will be available through Waterstones, Amazon and all good bookshops.


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From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan



From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan

There are some writers that you connect with and Donal Ryan is one of those great writers who was just born to write. His latest book From a Low and Quiet Sea (Doubleday) Donal Ryan brings together three stories that may read like four short stories but in a way they are all connected by human experiences of life. Three men three experiences of life.


The three men Farouk, Lampy and John are completely un-connected. Farouk story is set in war torn Syria. Farouk is a doctor trying to look after the sick and those caught up in the fighting and also keep safe his wife and daughter. The situation is now getting very grave and he knows no-one is safe. It takes a visit to the local square and what Farouk then sees with his own eyes is so appalling that he knows that he must get his family out of Syria to safety. Their journey into the unknown and to the safety of Europe will be tragic. This is a story that so deeply touched me and I loved how this story was told with so much sympathy.

We meet Lampy who is struggling with his own personal issues, struggling with the fact that his father never existed in his life, he family exists of his mother and grandfather. Lampy is not sure of his life and were down the road he is as his relationship with Chloe has now ended he feels empty and alone his heart broken. What do other people actually think of him really? What now for Lampy?

Lastly there is John, a life lived and by all account fulfilled but sometimes not everything may seem true and right. John’s life is coming to an end and now he realises he must seek the truth of his own life. Grief and regret come to the fore.

These three stories are just the most beautiful of stories, told with compassion for humanity and written with such empathy to everyday lives. Some books you read leave a last mark on the reader and I am sure that anyone who reads From a Low and Quiet Sea will feel that this is a book that will just linger long in the memory. There is something about the final chapter that read then re-read. This may be a small book in terms of pages but this I promise, there is something within the pages of this book that is much bigger. Anyone who has a heart and shows compassion for their fellow man will read this. “Be kind” HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

192 Pages.

Thank you Sophie Christopher for the advanced review copy of From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan.

From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan is published by Doubleday and was published on 22nd March and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and all good bookshops.


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