Friday 15 January 2021

Book Review - On Traigh Lar Beach Stories by Dianne Ebertt Beeaff

This book consists of two parts, the first section being short stories followed by a novella, I have always liked this book format. The first part of short stories are based around items found on a beach in the Scottish Hebrides. The stories about the items tells of the people who owned them and how they ended up in the water and then were swept across the Atlantic on the Gulf Stream to the wild Hebrides. 

Each story in this book is titled with the name of the person who owns the item which is  found on the beach. Beeaff also uses her artistic skills to draw the flora related to that name at the beginning of each story. 

All the stories are based in the Eastern USA and Canada and each is very distinct from each other and the characters and landscapes are wonderfully defined and draw you into the story. My particular favourite is Belle, set in Eastern Canada. It is very atmospheric and scary story that really has you on the edge of your seat! I really loved the whole idea of finding a story behind random items found on an isolated Scottish beach.

The novella is about four women who share a love for a Scottish band called Datha. There are chapters about each person, documenting their very different lives and paths in life. Once more the individuals are brought to life wonderfully by Beeaff with depth and sensitivity. 

I thought I knew what was going to happen at various points in the story only to be wrong! Loved that, I like a book that takes me down unexpected avenues. I felt that Annie's story was especially strong in this way. Gradually you realise the reality of what is going on with her, I won't spoil the book by saying more!

Again the ending was not what I thought it was going to be, which was a wonderful twist. 

I would highly recommend this book, you can buy it here On Triagh Lar Beach Stories