The sounds of unexpected tragedies—a roll of thunder, the crash of metal on metal—leave Miranda in shock amid the ruins of her broken family.
As she searches for new meaning in her life, Miranda finds quiet refuge with her family’s handyman, Dix, in his cabin in the dark forests of the Adirondack Mountains. Dix is kind, dependable, and good with an ax—the right man to help the sheltered Miranda heal—but ultimately, her sadness creates a void even he can’t fill.
When a man from her distant past turns up, the handsome idealist now known as Darius, he offers Miranda a chance to do meaningful work at The Source, a secluded property filled with his nature worshipers. Miranda feels this charismatic guru is the key to remaking her life, but her grief and desire for love also create an opportunity for his deception. And in her desperate quest to find herself after losing almost everything, Miranda and Dix could pay a higher price than they ever imagined.
|Product dimensions:||5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.30(d)|
About the Author
Laurel Saville is an award-winning author of numerous books, articles, essays, and short fiction. Her work has appeared in the LA Times Magazine, the Bark, NYTimes.com, and other publications. She holds an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars and lives and writes near Seattle. She is also a corporate communications consultant and has taught and spoken at a variety of colleges and writing conferences. Her memoir, Unraveling Anne, won the memoir category of the 2011 Indie Book Awards and was a runner-up to the grand prize winner at the Hollywood Book Festival. Her first novel, Henry and Rachel, a fictionalized account of her great-grandparents’ lives, was a finalist for a Nancy Pearl Award from the Pacific Northwest Writers Association.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings Told in four parts this book left me still thinking and even wondering how I really felt about it and even as I write this review, I am still in ponder. There are four main characters in this book, Miranda, Sally, Dix and Darius and within the four parts two of the four take center stage and are more of the focus, but all four are present in most of the four parts. The reader starts the book with Miranda as her family is dealing with a tragedy and another hits and Dix is there to help pick up the pieces. The second section the reader is introduced to Sally and Dix as Dix has come to the Adirondacks to try to find his path and in comes Sally to help him. The last two sections the duos swap and major drama takes place.
Laurel Saville softly and tenderly tells the stories of four characters. Two women. Two men. All haunted by something in the past. All seeking something for the present and the future. In North of Here, we meet Miranda, Dix, Sally, and Darius. Four people who could not be more different if they worked hard at being so. Yet, they are drawn together in four separate sections in the book. Each section deals with relationships between the characters at different times. As in real life, tragedies in the past and hurts never healed color who we are and make relationships difficult to develop. The same is true in North of Here. Juxtaposed to this is one character who has the ability to draw young women, totally unaware of his talent, into a tight-knit, commune-like living arrangement. I found North of Here somewhat difficult to get into as the book unfolded. However, and I don’t know exactly where, something in the character development and loving way the stories of each character played out, I found myself locked into reading until finished. Laurel Saville’s use of eloquent language and detailed descriptions of people, places, and things makes for a good read and one you look back on with pleasure. Readers who enjoy a taste of romance sprinkled in with some suspense and yes, blended with a bit of violence, North of Here should be in your TBR stack. Laurel Saville can easily become a favorite author.
This is the first book I have read by this author and I found it quite enjoyable. I liked that we have both a little romance and mystery all mixed into one story. The story starts a little slow but stick with it as it gets real interesting real quick, and you will be happy you stuck with it. I thought the author did a good job by giving you a twist in the story that you would never expect. That to me makes a good mystery story. This is such a deep book that sometimes you have to take a moment while reading it. The characters were so real and their emotions really came through in this author's writing style. All in all a good book.
3.5 stars North of Here is a story of contrasts and characters. Of two men. Of two women. Of those born into wealth but walking around poor in spirit. Of those personalities who are self-sufficient and of the ones who always seem to need a rescue. As I read Laurel Saville’s latest novel, I was struck especially by the differences in the four main characters, seen acutely in the narrative written from these four perspectives in turn. Perhaps most haunting to me was Miranda – the daughter of wealthy parents who loses everything familiar in a matter of months. Yet, for all the wealth she thought she had, she lacks purpose, confidence, and the ability to receive love when it finally comes her way. As a result, she wanders restlessly through her own life in search of what’s missing. The intertwining of Miranda’s narrative with Dix’s was the most heartbreaking. Dix is the hero character, the one who rescues. The one who loves. The healthiest one of the four, by far, and my favorite of the group. Another character called him, “a very good man who had no idea how good he was.” Conversely, Dix is also probably the character who suffers the most pain. North of Here is also a story that goes deeper than what appears at surface level. An uninhabitable log house, held onto for someone who didn’t really want it, left to go back to nature because “some things just can’t be fixed.” I saw so many parallels between this house and one of the main characters. Another house in the novel also seemed analogous of a main character, this one built around a menagerie of “guru-isms” and false hope. A toxic trailer. A bag of shorn hair. A ring. All of these devices – while useful to the story as objects in and of themselves – could easily be interpreted to carry a metaphoric meaning as well. Bottom Line: North of Here is not an easy read; rather, its complex characters and poignant plot devices will unsettle you. In places, the writing style was more blunt than I prefer. Still, Laurel Saville has penned a hauntingly unusual story that is not quite romantic fiction and not quite psychological thriller. It is a tale of survival and tragedy. It is a portrait of how grief shapes us, of how wealth shapes us… ultimately of how people shape us. But perhaps most poetically, it is a reminder that “some things just need to be let go” while others need to be held tight and cherished. (I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review.)