River of Hidden Dreams

( 3 )

Overview

"HEARTBREAKING...COMPELLING...The story carries you like a slow, implacable current."
--San Francisco Chronicle
Forty-something Sadie Hunter is a loner. But more than that, she is afraid of not being alone. Ever since her mother and Native American grandmother died together when she was a child, dancing cheek-to-cheek in a saloon in the middle of a violent storm, Sadie hasn't let anyone get too close. Not even Carlos, a passionate Cuban who sees the rich soul that Sadie tries to...
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Overview

"HEARTBREAKING...COMPELLING...The story carries you like a slow, implacable current."
--San Francisco Chronicle
Forty-something Sadie Hunter is a loner. But more than that, she is afraid of not being alone. Ever since her mother and Native American grandmother died together when she was a child, dancing cheek-to-cheek in a saloon in the middle of a violent storm, Sadie hasn't let anyone get too close. Not even Carlos, a passionate Cuban who sees the rich soul that Sadie tries to hide from herself.
Cynical and loveless, she becomes obsessed with learning more about her unacknowledged identity, torn apart by tragic family legends she can't quite believe. And although she tries to fight it, she half suspects that with Carlos's help, she could find the truth of the past, and it could set her free....
"A fluid, fun read--a story of self-discovery told by a woman haunted by female forebears while struggling to learn love....A work of accomplished introspection."
--The Philadelphia Inquirer

With a lush, earthy lyricism that evokes Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the critically acclaimed author of Sugar Cane continues to make what the Atlanta Journal & Constitution calls "true magic" on the page, with this rapturous tale of a fortyish free spirit who pilots a boat through south Florida waters.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The power of stories and myths to shape our lives is the leitmotif of Fowler's second novel, as it was in her well-received Sugar Cage , but this novel lacks the vibrancy and distinctive narrative voice that made the earlier book so memorable. This is the chronicle of a troubled woman's journey to find herself, a voyage both emotional and physical. Like her grandmother and mother, Sadie Hunter shuns permanent emotional commitment, a family pattern that began when her grandmother repudiated her parents, Plains Indians who had been held captive in Florida, to live instead with a white woman who adopted her. An affair with a young black man resulted in the birth of a mulatto daughter, Sadie's mother. As ethnic outsiders, both women passed on to Sadie a need for independence and psychological distance. Pressured by her passionate Cuban lover to acknowledge her need for him, Sadie eventually travels the waterways from Key West to her native St. Augustine, and during the odyssey she begins to understand the meaning of her family legends. Central to the plot are a ``magic'' chicken named Miss Raison, the mummified body of a baby discovered in a floating casket, a visit from St. Christopher and a sacred white alligator with sapphire eyes. These visitations do not lift the story to a higher level, however; the bland narrative holds few surprises. Rhapsodic descriptions of Florida's natural landscape are welcome, but bad-tempered, mercurial Sadie and her stubborn forebears do not elicit the reader's sympathy or interest. Author tour. Apr.
Library Journal
Sadie Hunter earns her modest living taking tourists on boat trips around Key West. If she is in the mood, she will entertain them with fascinating stories learned from her mother and grandmother, who both perished in a storm when Sadie was a child. Over the course of many trips, she spins the romantic tale of her Plains Indian grandmother's doomed love for her grandfather, a mulatto in St. Augustine, and her eventual return to him late in life. Although Sadie's stories sing with passion and intrigue, Sadie herself, at 42, seems like an annoying, self-centered adolescent, endlessly trying to understand why she can't commit to her Cuban boyfriend. Read Fowler's ( Sugar Cage , LJ 10/15/91) novel for its lovely, graceful tales of a South now vanished, full of magic, charms, and folklore. Recommended for most collections.-- Patricia Ross, Westerville P.L., Ohio
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780449983638
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 6/1/1995
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 334
  • Sales rank: 949,855
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2001

    MY FAVORITE NOVEL TO DATE!!!

    This novel is an easy and interesting read. I laughed and cried. Especially for women, this is a must read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2001

    Connie May Fowler at Her Best

    If you enjoyed reading Before Women Had Wings and Sugar Cage, you will not be disappointed by River of Hidden Dreams. Critics be damned - this woman can write! Fowler is among the most gifted writers of our time, I find that her characters ring true - yes, even the cynical and sometimes foul-mouthed Sadie Hunter. What sort of person would you have expected her to become, given her ancestry and the unusual circumstances of her upbringing? Fowler's novels (save Remembering Blue, NOT her best work) are glorious specimens of art, and I eagerly await her next release!

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    Posted April 8, 2009

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