Author :Melinda Fields
Publisher :Wise Women Ink
A breathtaking book! That’s how one would describe “True”. In a plot that resembles life itself, this book takes you on a wonderful journey of birth and death, making you realise the inevitability of both.
Caterina, a teenage girl is forced to leave the city of Phoenix, when her mother is sent to prison for prostitution and drug dealing. She has to go and live with her ailing grandmother whom she has never ever seen. The Green Valley in California is a cold and forbidding place for the young girl who is not welcomed in the small tight knit community. The story describes how racial prejudice and stereotyping brings her life on the edge of a dangerous precipice.
Just then she is taken in by Emma Cassidy , a midwife. Emma and her circle of horse-women friends pull Caterina inadvertently in their close knit sisterhood helping her overcome the life shaking incident and live a secure life. Caterina with her innate strength of character and determination emerges a winner from her ordeal.
The story gives us a touching portrayal of the eternal and deep friendship between Emma, Briar, Lilly, Clare and Midnight and how each faces her own battles of life. An illness makes Briar the ‘Clairvoyant’ and everyone becomes a student of life with her. Lilly and Clare, sisters, have to undergo pain because of their mother who has to live away from them. Additionally Clare finally chins up to an abusive husband. Midnight has her own demons to fight . Emma also sees an upheaval late in life when the old love she had brushed aside surfaces again.
The story weaves these absolutely believable characters and situations in beautiful tapestry. It strengthens the belief in love, friendship and humanity by its portrayal of the lives of these wonderful women who become each other’s guiding light and support. The pangs of loss, the pain of death and the fact that life is ever- ongoing is touchingly brought to fore. The cyclical plot takes the reader on a travail of birth and death, restoring the faith in love and life. The language is lucid and flowing. The weather, scenery, animals, farm life and wildlife come alive with vibrant description and imagery.
One can see glimpses of our own life and our own quest for the meaning of it all at many places. That is a measure of the author’s wisdom and deep understanding of life. True is indeed a novel not to be missed.