The story alternates between Rill Foss and her siblings and present day Avery Stafford. Between the two story lines, Rill Foss’s story is more captivating for me. I am really enthralled by historical fiction so Rill’s story drew me in from the beginning. I loved her character and how it was consistently developed throughout the book. Her strong personality and her ability to try as much as possible to bring her family together really made me love her.
One of the most underlying themes that dominated the story line is adoption. I haven’t personally experienced adoption in my family, however I have a few friends who have adopted children. There process to get these children has been long and contrary to the Foss children their experience has been better. In my view, the adoption of the Foss children bordered human trafficking because they were taken against their will and at some point the parents were forced into releasing their children for adoption.
This practice still happens in Kenya too. Recently in the news was a story of a cartel that traffics children for adoption abroad. One social worker stated that before a child is moved out of the country for adoption, it means other avenues locally have proved fruitless which in most cases is not so.
I am glad that at some point the Ross sisters were reunited, it was so unfair for them to be separated because it affected their decisions in terms of relationships with their extended families. It would seem that Queenie and Brinney’s life at the Arcadia was unsustainable I wonder though had they not been forcefully taken from their original home, would they be who they were in the present time? These are aspects of the book that I loved because they left you thinking and wondering what would have been.
As for the present day narrative of Avery, I still loved this part of the story because of the romantic nuances between Avery and Trent. Avery met as she was in the process of getting information of her granny’s past. I was rooting for these two and I would have wished that they ended up together as a couple. I wonder how it ended up for them though, the author left this part of the story to our imagination.
Below are some of the excerpts that stood out for me:
“Life is not unlike cinema. Each scene has its own music, and the music is created for the scene, wven to it in ways we do not understand. No matter how much we may love the melody of a bygone day or imagine the song of a future one, we must dance within the music of today, or we will always be out of step, stumbling around in something that doesn’t suit the moment.”
”A woman’s past need not predict her future. She can dance to new music if she chooses. Her own music. To hear the tune, she must only stop talking. To herself, I mean. We’re always trying to persuade ourselves of things”