A family is riven by an act of love and an act of brutality; a writer stands in the waist-high grass and wonders if he has found a place to call home; a boy sits with a young woman in the shade of an apple tree and reads to her of heartbreak and intrigue.
Divisadero is psychologically intricate, visually ravishing, devastating and beautiful.
The spellbinding story begins in the 1970s, on a farm in northern California, near to what had been Gold Rush country, and then moving into the raucous world of Nevada's casinos. There is a father, a daughter, Anna; an adopted sister, Claire; and an enigmatic young man named Coop. A traumatic event unexpectedly shatters their makeshift family and sets each of them on a separate course, until, years later, the past once again enters their lives.
The breathtaking second part unfolds in the stark landscape of south-central France, where Anna discovers echoes of old memories in the story of a well-known writer, Lucien Segura, who lived at one time in the small, isolated house she occupies - a story that leads back to the early part of the century.
Gorgeously written and with characters who will stay with us for the rest of our lives, Ondaatje's fourth novel brings together all of the elements for which his fiction is celebrated. In Divisadero , Michael Ondaatje is at the height of his artistic powers.
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