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Light on Snow by Anita Shreve

Light on Snow (2004)

by Anita Shreve

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this was more compelling in theory than in actuality. interesting premise but i wasn't too engaged with any of the characters. an ok read but one that (would have benefited from, and) could have brought up more (or deeper) philosophical questions pretty easily, but mostly sidestepped them. ( )
  elisa.saphier | Sep 28, 2014 |
Light on Snow by Anita Shreve; (3*)

After Nicky loses her mother and baby sister in a tragic automobile accident, she and her father move to an isolated community in New Hampshire. He gives up his career as an architect and begins to make Shaker-style wooden furniture for a living. His grief practically paralyzed him and he has withdrawn into himself. More and more Nicky must be the adult one in the remaining family.

One day after school Nicky and her father went for a walk through the snowy woods on their property. Nicky thinks that she hears a baby crying but finds that implausible until suddenly her father hears the same thing. They trek toward the sound on their snowshoes and all at once see a 'light on snow' which turns out to be a newborn baby wrapped in a bloody towel and slipped inside a sleeping bag. Nicky's father scoops up the freezing baby and they hurriedly get back to the house and into their truck and head out over the icy roads to the hospital.

Nicky wants to keep the baby and has trouble understanding when her father says no, that they must get it to the hospital and let the authorities take care of matters.

Soon a bedraggled young woman shows up at their house pretending to be shopping for furniture for her parents' Christmas gift. But Nicky and her father both figure out that the girl has seen the papers and found out that this family is the one that found her baby. The girl has not yet recovered from the birth and does not have the strength to leave so they take her in 'just until she is fit' to go.

The characters in this story are interesting and I can see how someone in both Nicky and her father's situation might react as they did...........up until they took the birth mother in. But the book was interesting and Anita Shreve always spins a good tale. ( )
2 vote rainpebble | Jul 28, 2014 |
Not bad. As a guilty pleasure, I generally like books written from an adolescent POV (as long as they're well written), and this was one of those. Nothing earth-shattering here, but it held my interest and certainly started off with a bang. ( )
  fefferbooks | May 12, 2014 |
I loved this book of Anita Shreve's too. Beautiful and haunting. Challenging and lovely. ( )
  wendyburrill | Mar 3, 2014 |
"In my mind I see a small stone dislodged in a wall, one stone shoved forward until it falls. The other stones shift and settle and try to fill in the space, but still there is a hole through which water, in the form of memory, begins to seep." (51)

Reeling from unspeakable tragedy, Robert Dillon recedes from life. Leaving behind family home and a successful career in architecture in New York, he uproots his twelve-year-old daughter, Nicky, and relocates to remote New Hampshire. On a December afternoon, the two discover an abandoned newborn wrapped in a bloody towel in the snow. Nicky, about to come of age, is jarred into the adult world; and, not surprisingly, she struggles with her understanding of that world and the adults who inhabit it. Simultaneously, a young woman must live the consequences of the terrible choices she has made. And a canny Detective demonstrates his sense of justice.

Light on Snow, effectively written from the point of view of thirty-year-old Nicky, is a story of tragedy and redemption, and of love and courage. I’ve now read several Shreve novels; I pick them up for easy reading and escape. This one did not disappoint.

"I thought about how one tiny decision can change a life. A decision that takes only a split second to make." (151) ( )
2 vote lit_chick | Jan 18, 2014 |
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For my mother
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Beyond the window of my father's shop, midwinter light skims the snow.
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Book description
Widow and his surviving daughter discover a neborn left to die in the snow. A mysterious visitor to their home turns out to be the baby's mother.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316014281, Mass Market Paperback)

What makes a family? That's what twelve-year-old Nicky Dillon wonders after she and her widowed father discover a wailing abandoned baby in the snow-filled woods near their New Hampshire home. Through the days that follow, the Dillons and an unexpected visitor who soon turns up at their door-a young woman evidently haunted by her own terrible choices-face a thicket of decisions, each seeming to carry equal possibilities of heartbreak and redemption. Writing with all the emotional resonance that has drawn millions of readers around the world to her fiction, Anita Shreve unfolds in Light on Snow a tender and surprising novel about love and its consequences.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:53:41 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

When a father and his daughter find an abandoned infant in the snow, the event forever alters the 11-year-old's understanding of the world. A brilliant and beautiful contemporary novel about love and memory from the author of the bestselling novels All He Ever Wanted and The Pilots Wife.… (more)

» see all 5 descriptions

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