Town Is by the Sea Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2018-05-03 
Review Score: 4 out of 5 star From 0 user ratings

"I've never read a book quite like this one, and I found it quite moving since it reminded me of the many fathers, including my own, whose daily labor wasn't the most pleasant way to make a living. Set in the coal mining town of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, a young boy spends his day in a most satisfactory fashion, enjoying the scenery, hanging out with a friend, doing errands for his mother, and stopping by his grandfather's grave. Even while he enjoys the carefree moments of his childhood, his father is working beneath the surface of the sea digging for coal. For the boy and the man, the best moment of the day is when the father returns to the surface and enjoys dinner with his family and then gazing at the sea near their home. The last lines and the author's note let readers know that the boy knows that his life is soon going to change, and those carefree days will be things of the past when he, too, must begin working in the mine. The illustrations, created in ink, watercolor, and gouache, effectively contrast the soft beauty of the ocean and the boy's town with the bleakness of the dark spaces in which his father labors. Concluding the book on a note of acceptance of his fate because "in my town, that's the way it goes" leaves readers thinking about life choices and the expectations and limitations placed on us by our environment, our upbringing, and the options we think are available to us. The simple yet eloquent text and those powerful images tug relentlessly at readers' hearts. As finished this book, published in Canada, once more I found myself grateful to my own father for doing a certain kind of work so that I would never have to. " said.

" Very moving, real, and beautifully illustrated. " said.

" A poetic picture book about a boy musing on life in a small mining town and his father who works in the pits. The illustrations by Sydney Smith are lovely. " said.

" This is a lovely, simple story about a boy and his typical day in a seaside mining town, with beautiful illustrations. " said.

" Beautiful story and illustrations. " said.

" A boy goes about his day always cognizant not only that his dad is under the sea digging for coal, but that that will be his destiny too. " said.

" I enjoyed the contrast of the dark enclosed space of the mines versus the wide open airiness of the ocean. I also felt sad and wished for more for the boy than the legacy of the mines. " said.

" Full of sensory details, a little boy describes a day in his life in a small, coastal, coal mining town. Will those not living by the ocean or without knowledge of coal mining enjoy this book with a quiet beauty of its own? " said.

June 2018 New Book:

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