River of Forgiveness by K Lorraine Kidumae

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River of Forgiveness by K Lorraine Kidumae

Book Review 

by Suraya Dewing

River of Forgiveness 

by K Lorraine Kiidumae (Canada)

This gentle novel came to my attention when I realised the author was regularly putting her chapters through Stylefit. I became interested to find out how it fared once it was published. 

It has done well and was on Amazon's top 10 and top 100 on Amazon.ca's Coming of Age Bestsellers list for the first month after release.

So what is River of Forgiveness about? 

Sadness weaves through this novel. It sort of hangs there, not being sentimental or self pitying but just present throughout the story. Sydney falls in love with a man she meets at a dance. She is swept off her feet. The time is towards the end of the war and so it is not surprising that this stranger discloses little about himself. This was a time when people were displaced and dislocated by circumstances.  

This is a young woman finding her way in the world and she faced two clear possibilities for her future. Her preferred option was removed by circumstances leaving her with the second option.

She was a woman in a world psychologically damaged by war.  It was a world adjusting to a new social order, with all certainty removed. Roles were defined by gender and people's values were put to the test. Sydney was victim of this social disorder. But then, life is all about the choices we make and we have to live with the consequences of those choices. That, I think, is what the author is saying in this novel.

Its apparent simplicity hides the skill with which the author portrays Sydney, an impressionable, fragile eighteen year old, and her heartbreak.

Kiidumae captures the blind throes of young love, the crushing darkness of heartbreak, and the emotional alienation of a passionless union with the fresh eye of a fine new talent and the confidence of an old pro. River of Forgiveness is a powerful novel bursting with emotional impact. I loved spending time with these characters.”

Dennis Bock, author of The Good German and Scotiabank Giller prize finalist, Going Home Again

Available on Amazon

River of Forgiveness

Kindle: US$5.74

Paperback: US$11.95