Discovering Carol BergJune 2, 2009
One of my favorite things to do if/when I get some free time each day is to pull up a few of my favorite sites to see if there’s some gem of a book out there that I just might discover I can’t live without. I suppose it’s something akin to fishing for me, it helps me relax first and foremost, and I love the thrill of the hunt as I anticipate catching that book that has somehow eluded my grasp…until now. Well, obviously there are thousands and thousands of catches out there I’ll never snag, but I usually walk away from the endeavor gratified and with some measure of success. That was certainly the case today.
I stumbled upon a recommendation thread where names and titles were being thrown out left and right. I’m certainly used to that and I’ll often have amazon open in another tab to check out the author, their books, the price, and all of that jazz to see if the book in question looks like something that would appeal to me. I’d been doing that for a few minutes when I stumbled upon Carol Berg’s name. There was much ado about her skill, characterization, and the twists that her stories took so I took a moment to look up her work and was quickly impressed by the reviews that appeared to form a common theme, specifically her originality, characterization and the strength of her language.
But in the end, it was this blurb in regard to the premise of her stand alone novel Song of the Beast in particular that really hit home, and for more reasons than one:
Brutal imprisonment has broken Aidan McAllister. His voice is silent, his hands ruined, his music that once offered beauty and hope to war-torn Elyria destroyed. The god who nurtured his talent since boyhood has abandoned him. But no one ever told him his crime.
The description of Aidan’s suffering, without an understanding of why he was forced to endure it hit me pretty hard for some reason (likely the humility that drips from the heart from those so afflicted) and after reading the extended chapter excerpt for Song of the Beast on Carol’s website I knew that I’d have to jettison this to the top of my ever growing “to read” pile. I placed an order for the book earlier today and look forward to it arriving within the next week or so. What’s more, apparently I’ll get to read about a “cousin” of mine, a fellow MacAlasdair who are all to rare in literature and who I hope I can cheer on with an even greater enthusiasm than I normally would, what with a vested interest in the family heritage and all!
All in good fun, and stay tuned for more of what I thought about the book in the weeks to come. Additionally, I’d love to hear opinions from anyone that’s read any of Carol’s work if you’ve got ’em!