You, Me, and the Sea: A Novel
Author Meg Donohue opens You, Me, and The Sea with a rainy morning in Sea Cliff, an exclusive residential neighborhood in San Francisco. Will Langford and Merrow Shawe have carefully planned their engagement party in their home and surrounding garden. They hope for better weather later in the day. What transpires is the beginning of the real story.
Merrow is the narrator for the entire two-part novel. Ms. Donohue gives her a singsong voice when Merrow describes her early childhood on a dirt-poor farm. There are warning signs mixed in with a few pleasant events. To make matters worse, her older brother, Bear, constantly torments Merrow. There is a bit too much anxiety, anticipation and pain for the reader. Unlike How to Eat a Cupcake, a prior work by Ms. Donohue, You, Me, and The Sea lacks balance with its overwhelming tension.
Readers can be sure of Ms. Donohue’s knowledge of the Bay Area. She sets up striking contrasts between wealth and poverty using detailed descriptions of the locales where the action takes place. Although the Pacific Coast is the overall setting, this is not a beach novel.
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