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Swimming at Night    by Lucy Clarke Amazon.com order for
Swimming at Night
by Lucy Clarke
Order:  USA  Can
Touchstone, 2013 (2013)
Hardcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Author Lucy Clarke is a newcomer to the field. It's hard to believe. She writes as though a pro. Her descriptive phrases glow like moonlight on the sea. At times, I just had to pause in my reading to enjoy her choice of phrasing. It's subtle, her carefully chosen words placing you in the scene without your being aware of her technique.

The story is as captivating as the phrasing. Mia lives in London with her sister Katie after the death of their mother. Katie is dependable, reeks of self-confidence, and does the right thing at the right time. Mia is undependable, wild, unpredictable. As is her decision to travel the world with her childhood friend Finn. Katie, upset, sees her off at the airport, where she asks Finn to take care of Mia.

Some months later, Katie is notified that Mia has committed suicide by jumping from a cliff in Bali. Not believing that Mia would destroy herself, Katie, newly engaged, finds a journal in Mia's backpack that has been returned to her family. Determined to duplicate her sister's last months, Katie traces Mia's journey, hoping to prove to herself and the world that her sister had no reason to plan her own death.

Swimming at Night is a study of relationships between siblings the good and the bad. And, to my mind, the miscommunication responsible for so many misunderstandings between family members. A lovely book sad and happy all at the same time. Well worth the read.

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