Touched By An Island (Soft Cover)
by Marion Seabrook « View this author's BIO
Suddenly he was at the beach. Huge rollers that looked like still waters from above were sending wet fingers deep into the shore. They smoothed the sand as they advanced towards him, then created little wavy ditches in retreat. He took off his shoes and socks and walked towards the water. He stood there, letting its cold freshness cool his throbbing feet. He looked along the shoreline. Nothing to the left of him, just miles and miles of sand disappearing into a subtle line of water meeting sky. He looked to the right. Far down something was on the beach. He strained to see. It was a dory. He might as well think in the language of the place. And there was movement around the boat. It was just one person, he was pretty sure. He was moving slowly around it, maybe pulling it. It was too far away to see clearly. Brian turned his scrutiny to the sea. A few boulders, smooth and polished, had fixed themselves securely at the water's edge, like chairs set up for a concert. There were two close together. He picked the one slightly higher than the other, low enough to allow the water to reach his feet, but high enough to keep dry when the roller crawled in. This was what you would call an orchestra seat, all right. He would sit down and wait until the curtains opened and the music started.
Touched By An Island is rooted in the spirit of home. It is a murder plot, a love story, the finding of a son a mother had given up at birth, and a look at the rural character. But it is mostly about the importance of place.
The importance of their Island home is forefront in Mae's and Allie's experience; it is the reason why Brian left the city with its big paycheck and returned to his parents' farm; it is something that Jamie wants to learn more about, and it is something that Sheila is coming to understand when she observes that "It's funny how you Islanders are so attached to a place."
But it is not that uncommon, as Brian is told by the Old Timer he meets on a Cape Breton Island beach, a journey he has undertaken in order to accomplish some soul searching. "Sometimes you gotta go away," the Old Timer says, "to know that where you really belong is where you come from. When you're touched by an island, a big part of you is always going to be there." Brian acknowledges that this is the answer to his quest.