Monday, May 29, 2017

Blog Tour: All that is Solid Melts into Air by Carole Giangrande

Author:  Carole Giangrande
Publisher: Inanna Publications 
Date of publication: May 15, 2017

In the morning fog of the North Atlantic, Valerie hears the frenetic ticking of clocks. She’s come from Toronto to hike on the French island of St. Pierre and to ponder her marriage to Gerard Lefèvre, a Montrealer and a broadcast journalist whose passion for justice was ignited in his youth by the death of his lover in an airline bombing. He's a restless traveller (who she suspects is unfaithful) and she's the opposite: quiet, with an inner life she nurtures as a horticulturalist. Valerie's thinking about Gerard on assignment in her native New York City, where their son Andre works. In New York City, an airplane has plunged into a skyscraper, and in the short time before anyone understands the significance of this event, Valerie's mind begins to spiral in and out of the present moment, circling around her intense memories of her father's death, her youthful relationship with troubled Matthew, and her pregnancy with his child, the crisis that led to her marriage to Gerard, and her fears for the safety of her son Andre and his partner James. Unable to reach her loved ones, Valerie finds memory intruding on a surreal and dreamlike present until at last she connects with Gerard and the final horror of that day.

All that is Solid Melts into Air is the story of one woman's journey through the uncertainty of the day on 9/11 and subsequent days after.  It's kind of a hard book to say whether or not I liked it.  I'm not sure I can tell you either way.  It's a book that I think will affect everyone differently. It's a definitely a heavy book and one I couldn't read in one sitting.

 I thought the author did a really good job of portraying the panic and anxiety of that day.  With Valerie being on an island in France, she is cut off from reaching her husband and son to see if they are OK.  It brought back memories for me of that day and not knowing if coworkers who were traveling that day were safe.  Not knowing if loved ones in DC were safe.  Not knowing what was happening to our country.  Having said that, I'm not sure this book completely worked for me.  There were time jumps and memory sequences that made for a disjointed read.  The flow of the book wasn't as smooth as I would have liked.  I found myself wanting to skim parts.

 I do recommend giving it a  try.  While hard to read at times, I feel it's a book you have to experience for yourself.  Check out the list below to see what others think about that book.

"With shattering grace Giangrande divines catastrophic grief, the redemptive power of ephemeral joys, and the interconnectedness of all things as past and present conflate in terrorism's chaos. Memory becomes balm as life, all life, is porous. Exquisite, devastating, this book is a bomb." —Carol Bruneau, author of These Good Hands

"An elegy for lost innocence, All That Is Solid Melts Into Air is at once extremely sad and exquisitely hopeful. Its hopefulness resides mainly in the stubborn resonance of the quotidian, and in the kind hearts and good wills of those who refuse to accept evil, no matter how often it crashes into their lives. Carole Giangrande has achieved a great deal in this short, beautiful book; confronting the incomprehensible without despair and describing profound grief without sentimentality." —Susan Glickman, author of The Tale-Teller and Safe as Houses

"All That Is Solid Melts Into Air is above all a compassionate book. Carole Giangrande takes that horrifying day—September 11, 2001—and filters it though the consciousness of a woman, Valerie, whose loved ones are in Manhattan as the crisis unfolds. She doesn’t know whether they are dead or alive, and Giangrande is masterful in her expression of Valerie’s surreal state of mind. The book captures with gut-wrenching acuity the anxiety, fear and distress of not only that particular day but of our current social climate as well. No one is safe anymore—was anyone, ever?—and our perceptions rule us: “The truth was that everything you looked at had to pass through the lens of what you imagined you saw. It was up to you to decide what was real.”  Timely words from a timely book." —Eva Tihanyi, author of The Largeness of Rescue

Purchase Links

About the author:

Born and raised in the New York City area, Carole Giangrande is a Toronto-based novelist and author of nine books, including the award-winning novella A Gardener on the Moon, the novels An Ordinary Star and A Forest Burning, the short story collection, Missing Persons and the novellas Here Comes The Dreamer and Midsummer. Her third novel, All That Is Solid Melts Into Air will be published in Spring 2017. She's worked as a broadcast journalist for CBC Radio (Canada's public broadcaster) and her fiction, poetry, articles and reviews have appeared in Canada’s major journals and newspapers (Her essay "Goshawk" was Lyric Essay Award Winner in the Eastern Iowa Review, 2016). She's read her fiction at Toronto's Harbourfront Centre, at the Banff Centre for the Arts (as an Artist-in-Residence), the University of Toronto, on radio and at numerous public venues. She has recently completed another novel.

Find out more about Carole at her website, and connect with her on Twitter and Facebook.

1 comment:

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

Thanks for being a part of the tour!