05 May 2009 ~ 0 Comments

(Book) The Year of Fog by Michelle Richmond


This one is hard to review without giving away spoilers, but I’ll try… a friend of mine called this book “manipulative” and I agree. I also think the first 50% of it could be condensed down quite a bit. There was a lot of “and then I searched and looked and searched and looked”. I get the panic, I get the hopelessness. I get that. But sheesh. Having said that, I liked the ending. I just didn’t like the final ending. I felt like screaming “yeah right, give me a break” in the last few pages. It just didn’t ring true for me.

I liked the story of the book up until the very very end. I wanted that final payout I suppose. I really didn’t like the writing. It was too much. Too flowery, too detailed, just too too much.

I also didn’t really like any of the characters. None of them came off exceptionally real or exceptionally sympathetic.

Having said that, as I write this, we haven’t had book club for this one, but I think this will make for a good meeting. That part, I look forward to 🙂


Life changes in an instant. On a foggy beach. In the seconds when Abby Mason—photographer, fiancée soon-to-be-stepmother—looks into her camera and commits her greatest error. Heartbreaking, uplifting, and beautifully told, here is the riveting tale of a family torn apart, of the search for the truth behind a child’s disappearance, and of one woman’s unwavering faith in the redemptive power of love—all made startlingly fresh through Michelle Richmond’s incandescent sensitivity and extraordinary insight.

Six-year-old Emma vanished into the thick San Francisco fog. Or into the heaving Pacific. Or somewhere just beyond: to a parking lot, a stranger’s van, or a road with traffic flashing by. Devastated by guilt, haunted by her fears about becoming a stepmother, Abby refuses to believe that Emma is dead. And so she searches for clues about what happened that morning—and cannot stop the flood of memories reaching from her own childhood to illuminate that irreversible moment on the beach.

Now, as the days drag into weeks, as the police lose interest and fliers fade on telephone poles, Emma’s father finds solace in religion and scientific probability—but Abby can only wander the beaches and city streets, attempting to recover the past and the little girl she lost. With her life at a crossroads, she will leave San Francisco for a country thousands of miles away. And there, by the side of another sea, on a journey that has led her to another man and into a strange subculture of wanderers and surfers, Abby will make the most astounding discovery of all—as the truth of Emma’s disappearance unravelswith stunning force.

A profoundly original novel of family, loss, and hope—of the choices we make and the choices made for us—The Year of Fog beguiles with the mysteries of time and memory even as it lays bare the deep and wondrous workings of the human heart. The result is a mesmerizing tour de force that will touch anyone who knows what it means to love a child.


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