The Salt God's Daughter

The Salt God's Daughter

by Ilie Ruby


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781619020023
Publisher: Soft Skull Press, Inc.
Publication date: 09/04/2012
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.16(h) x 1.18(d)

About the Author

Ilie Ruby grew up in Rochester, NY and lived in Long Beach, California, where she was a fifth grade teacher. She is the winner of the Edwin L. Moses Award for Fiction, chosen by T.C. Boyle; a Kerr Foundation Fiction Scholarship; and the Phi Kappa Phi Award for Creative Achievement in Fiction. She is also the winner of the Wesleyan Writer's Conference Davidoff Scholarship in Nonfiction and the Kemp Award for Outstanding Teaching and Scholarship. She graduated from the Masters of Professional Writing Program at the University of Southern California where she held the position of fiction editor of The Southern California Anthology.

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The Salt God's Daughter 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
thebookwormNJ More than 1 year ago
The Salt God's Daughter is a beautifully written novel about mothers, daughters and sisters and the bonds that tie them together. Sisters Ruthie and Dolly are raised by their eccentric and many times irrational mother, Diana. Diana is always struggling to stay afloat as a single mom. At first you see the story through the eyes of a young Ruthie and many of these scenes are heart wrenching as the girls live a nomadic life, living out of a car with their unstable mother. The magical realism and the mythology infused into the novel made this for a dream-like read. As roles are reversed, the girls have to care for their mother. Diana is an alcoholic who suffers from bouts of depression and mania. Always on the road, staying in motels from time to time, these three are at the mercy of help from others. Diana often tells the girls how they ruined her life, she blames them for her losses. The narrative is beautiful and some passages stole my breath away. The story goes from past to present, as Ruthie takes us through the years of her life. Ruthie finds love one day, a complicated affair with a fisherman who comes and goes from her life. She calls him the Salt God. Ruthie has a daughter, Naida, whom she refers to from time to time, until the latter half of the novel when the child is born and the story begins to revolve around Naida's life. This is the first time I've seen my name in a novel, as it is not a common name and I was pleasantly surprised. Bullying becomes a theme in the novel as Naida is harassed by some of her classmates due to her having a webbed foot. They call her the "Frog Witch". I liked Naida's character best, this is a girl who was in love with the ocean, who believed she could breathe under water and who was always searching for her father. The bullying scenes and Naida's inner monologue over them were particularly heart breaking. I also liked Ruthie's character and the bond between this mother and daughter. The story spans three generations of these women's lives, Diana, Ruthie and Naida. I recommend The Salt God's Daughter to fans of magical realism and stories that are heart breaking, but showcase the strength of the human spirit as well. disclaimer: This review is my honest opinion. I did not receive any type of compensation for reading and reviewing this book. I am under no obligation to write a positive review. I won a copy of The Salt God's Daughter online.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
WOW! A fascinating novel that felt epic and intimate at the same time. I will never look at the ocean in the same way again. Highly recommended
Lilac_Wolf More than 1 year ago
The Salt God's Daughter isn't an overly long book, but it is full of poetic and descriptive writing. The story itself is gripping and I enjoyed the writing. But I do want to give fair warning, it does get wordy. Now you just have to decide if you like that or not. I thought it was beautiful and moved quickly through the tale. It's split into two parts. The first part tells the story of Ruthie's childhood, which was mostly unsupervised and spent homeless and traveling. Ruthie grows up to give birth to Naida and swears her daughter will never question her love. Ruthie has a terrible fear of water, yet lives near the ocean. Her daughter, Naida, loves the Ocean completely. There were plenty of happy moments within the story, but you spend a lot of time with your heart breaking for Ruthie and Naida. The author doesn't pretend that it's all rosy when you are considered to be on the fringe of society. If you are different, you are a target. There is a hint of magic in this tale with the tale of the people with animal skins who live in the water, never really belonging on land or to the sea. Ruthie's mother was obsessed with the moon and drawn to the ocean. It wasn't presented in a way to be "true" but it is never quite written off either. I truly loved all the mini-tales within this book. I was sorry to finish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago