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Original Essays | September 17, 2014

Merritt Tierce: IMG Has My Husband Read It?

My first novel, Love Me Back, was published on September 16. Writing the book took seven years, and along the way three chapters were published in... Continue »
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4 Local Warehouse Literature- A to Z

The Year of Fog


The Year of Fog Cover

ISBN13: 9780385340120
ISBN10: 0385340125
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

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 childs disappearance, and of one womans unwavering faith in the redemptive power of love—all made startlingly fresh through Michelle Richmonds 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 strangers 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, Emmas 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 Emmas disappearance unravels with 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.

From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Michelle Richmond is the author of the novel Dream of the Blue Room and a story collection which won the Associated Writing Programs Award. She is also the recipient of the 2006 Mississippi Review Prize. A native of Mobile, Alabama, Michelle lives with her husband and son in San Francisco, where she teaches creative writing and serves on the advisory board of the Christopher Isherwood Foundation. She is currently at work on her next novel, which Delacorte will publish in 2008.

From the Hardcover edition.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Wendy Robards, November 12, 2008 (view all comments by Wendy Robards)
Abby Mason, a photographer, is about to be married to Jake - a handsome school teacher - and become a stepmother to Jake’s adorable, green-eyed daughter Emma. For Abby becoming a mother is a leap of faith, something she was not sure she could ever do, and yet she has fallen in love with not only Jake but with Emma as well. And so having Emma to herself for a weekend while Jake is out of town feels wonderful…until a moment on San Francisco’s Ocean Beach when, in a dense and swirling fog, Abby looks away for a second and Emma disappears.

The Year of Fog begins on that fateful day with the first hours and days of the official search and media blitz. As the days turn into weeks and then months, many reach the conclusion that Emma has drowned - including her father - and all that is left is Abby’s certainty, her mother’s instinct, that Emma is still alive.

Michelle Richmond has written a book about guilt, fear, memory and hope. In Abby, she captures the raw emotions of making a mistake with dire consequences and the obsession to right the wrong. Richmond explores the confusing science of memory as Abby struggles to put together the pieces of what she may (or may not) have seen in order to solve the mystery of Emma’s disappearance. Perception and memory become intertwined with Abby’s art of photography and Richmond’s writing in these sections is poetic and beautifully wrought.

Richmond’s novel enthralls the reader from beginning to end. It is a page turner which begs to be read in one long gulp. It is a literary rollercoaster ride of despair and hope, joy and sadness. Richmond weaves together a convincing story of a family on the verge of destruction and one woman’s determination to find the child she loves. It is rare when a writer is able to make the reader feel what the protagonist feels on every level - but, that is exactly what Richmond does in The Year of Fog. I was breathless, my heart racing, with the desperate urge to find Emma. As a volunteer in Search and Rescue for more than ten years, I was reminded of the actual searches I have been on - the sense of urgency, the conviction that the lost person must be just around the next corner, the fear that giving up the search might be the biggest mistake you’ve ever made.

The Year of Fog is a gripping tale, one skillfully written which will haunt and exhilarate the reader.

Highly recommended.
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Product Details

Richmond, Michelle
Bantam Books
General Fiction
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Bantam Discovery
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
8.32x5.28x.95 in. .67 lbs.

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