April 16, 2012 by Reader's Connection
Katherine Towler´s Snow Island is named after a summer resort island off the New England coast. The main characters aren´t summer people, though; they´re the people who live there year-round, especially sixteen-year old Alice Daggett who runs the store.
The only major character who comes from the mainland is George Tibbits, who makes the journey every year as an homage to the two women, long deceased, who raised him there.
Our story begins in 1941, and we see how the coming of World War II brings change even to this island. In the spirit of full disclosure, I should say that the ending–the intertwining of the story’s Alice thread and its George thread–doesn’t work for me; but I recommend the book anyway because the life-patterns of Alice and “that peculiar breed known as islanders” are still with me weeks after I finished reading, as are the island’s geographical contours and George’s attempt to circle it in a rowboat.