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Review: Last Light over Carolina

July 14, 2009

Last Light Over Carolina

Bud Morrison, a shrimper in the lowcountry of South Carolina, goes out for one haul, telling his wife he’ll be back by noon.  When he gets to the docks, his crew isn’t there, and Bud makes the decision to go out on his own.  When a storm kicks up and he’s a few hours late, his wife of over thirty years, Carolina, becomes terrified and the whole shrimping community comes together to search for one of their own.

Most of Last Light over Carolina, by Mary Alice Monroe,  takes place in the course of one day, with flashbacks and memories filling in the details.  The story unfolds slowly for the reader, and what a delightful journey it is, to learn about two people from such different backgrounds and how their love carried them through.  Carolina and Bud have had a long marriage, but things haven’t always been easy for them.  They survived long separations (when Bud went to Florida to shrimp), the destruction of Hurricane Hugo, a shrimp market devastated by the influx of cheap, foreign shrimp, and the loss of Carolina’s teaching position.  Yet they persevered and became stronger because of it.  The character development in this book is fantastic – the characters are flawed, but real –  and I liked the way the story was quietly revealed with flashbacks.  The story line is excellent, too.   Last Light over Carolina made me reflect on what I value in life  and also made me appreciate more how hard some people work to put dinner on our table.   In case you didn’t figure it out, I loved this story of hope, love and commitment!

Here’s an interesting video on how hard a shrimper works:

Review copy provided by Pocket Books.

40 Comments leave one →
  1. July 14, 2009 6:59 am

    Oh no, another one to put on my ever-growing wish list. I’m going to have to win the lottery to buy all these books!

  2. July 14, 2009 7:03 am

    I’ve read a few of the reviews on the tour and I am really liking what I am seeing of this book. I love the idea of learning about shrimping.

  3. July 14, 2009 7:09 am

    Great review of a wonderful novel, that can be read on many different levels. I recommend the book very highly as well.

  4. July 14, 2009 7:17 am

    I like it when you love a new book. Makes me want to click right over to Amazon. The video was interesting. Thanks.

  5. July 14, 2009 7:17 am

    I like the video, very interesting. The scenery at the beginning looks a little like the book cover. The book sounds like a good one 🙂

  6. July 14, 2009 7:55 am

    Love your review. It sounds so sad though. I hope I find it in bookstores. Also, love the cover, there is something calming about it.

  7. July 14, 2009 8:32 am

    Because I like flashbacks, I like the sound of the structure of this book. I’m glad you liked it and I’ll be keeping my eye out!

  8. July 14, 2009 8:34 am

    This sounds like a great book, glad to hear that you enjoyed it and learned about something new along the way.

  9. July 14, 2009 8:43 am

    OK! You’ve sold me on this one! This looks so good!

  10. July 14, 2009 9:11 am

    Excellent review that makes me want to run out and get this book. Glad to hear you enjoyed it so much. Have a great week!

  11. July 14, 2009 9:17 am

    I’m just starting to read the tour posts. I hadn’t heard of this book before, but it sounds like something I’d enjoy reading. Thanks for the review.


  12. July 14, 2009 9:21 am

    I loved this book too! Thanks for the video, I’m glad I can visualize shrimping a little better now.

  13. July 14, 2009 9:25 am

    I can’t wait to read this one (I am not actually on the tour!). Ever since I read a description of the book, I knew I’d like it and your review has confirmed that.

  14. July 14, 2009 9:28 am

    Such a nice review! This is one of the books I resisted in an effort control my book piles – but I can see it’s one I’ll definitely want to read soon!
    It’s true – some professions are so physically arduous and dangerous and yet people go out and do them every day. Fishing may be a fun way to relax, but if you’re doing it for a living, you are really working hard!

  15. July 14, 2009 9:58 am

    This looks like a beautiful book. I’ve been encountering it everywhere, lately. Thanks for the shrimping info!

  16. July 14, 2009 11:09 am

    Great review Kathy. This sounds like such a wonderful book. I’ll have to keep an eye out for it.

  17. July 14, 2009 11:30 am

    I haven’t read a Monroe book in a quite a while and I don’t know why. I really enjoy her writing, so thanks for the great review and the reminder to pick up this book from an author I enjoy.

  18. July 14, 2009 11:33 am

    Nice review. It sounds good. I need to add this one to my list.

  19. July 14, 2009 11:51 am

    I saw this book in shelf awareness I think. Sounds like a good read, really gets you thinking.

  20. July 14, 2009 12:04 pm

    Good review – glad you enjoyed it!! I asked for this one from SA, so I’m just waiting on it to arrive.

  21. July 14, 2009 12:56 pm

    I loved this one too! That shrimping video is so cool! What a great idea, thanks for posting it.

  22. July 14, 2009 2:23 pm

    I really enjoyed this as well. Lovely review.

  23. July 14, 2009 2:47 pm

    Sounds really good. I like the idea of reading about a small shrimping village. It reminds me of a town near where I live, which used to be a lobster fishing village.

  24. stacybuckeye permalink
    July 14, 2009 3:03 pm

    This does sound good!

  25. July 14, 2009 3:56 pm

    As if the beautiful cover wasn’t enough to entice me, your glowing review put it over the top.
    Thanks Bermudaonion!

  26. July 14, 2009 6:00 pm

    sounds great- and i love the video!

  27. July 14, 2009 7:59 pm

    I’m so glad this book is getting good reviews – I love “Carolina” books!

  28. July 14, 2009 8:18 pm

    I absolutely loved this book!

    I’ve already been recommending it to everyone lol

  29. July 14, 2009 8:24 pm

    living in a coastal town, many of our neighbors make their living fishing. it’s a dangerous and difficult job and i’d be interested to read this novel. i don’t even eat seafood, but the ocean is one of my favorite places to in the world. put me on the beach and i’m a happy camper. great review!

  30. July 14, 2009 8:57 pm

    As soon as I saw where this book was set, I thought it might appeal to you; that’s Appeal with a capital A in this case – glad to know it was such a hit!

  31. July 14, 2009 9:08 pm

    What a great review! I enjoyed the video too. 🙂 You made me want to know more.

  32. July 14, 2009 9:18 pm

    I’ve never read Mary Alice Munro but obviously I’m missing out on a great book!! Gonna have to add this one now!!

  33. July 14, 2009 9:32 pm

    Great review – and thanks for the video. Very interesting. I’m going to have to read more by Monroe. She’s a very engaging author.

  34. Lori Barnes permalink
    July 14, 2009 11:49 pm

    I love Mary Alice Monroe’s writting and she’s a author when i here there’s a new book i don’t even read the cover for details i know i have to have it!
    My favorite 2 books are The Beach house and the follow up Swimming Lessons.

  35. July 15, 2009 3:23 am

    This is definitely a book I’d enjoy reading…Fantastic review…and I love the cover!

  36. July 15, 2009 8:52 am

    Last light over Carolina sounds great. Thanks for sharing. I love the Carolina coast!

  37. July 17, 2009 7:06 pm

    I’ve been seeing reviews of this one quite a bit lately. It does sound really good. I’m glad you enjoyed it, Kathy! Great review.

  38. June 29, 2010 11:22 am

    This sounds like a book I would enjoy! I love books set in the Low Country. I like to travel in my reading since I can’t afford to do it in real life right now! Great review!


  1. 2009: The Year in Review « Bermudaonion's Weblog
  2. Author event and giveaway: Mary Alice Monroe « Bermudaonion's Weblog

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