Published by Flatiron Books on August 4, 2020
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Bantering Books Rating:
Franny Stone has always been the kind of woman who is able to love but unable to stay. Leaving behind everything but her research gear, she arrives in Greenland with a singular purpose: to follow the last Arctic terns in the world on what might be their final migration to Antarctica. Franny talks her way onto a fishing boat, and she and the crew set sail, traveling ever further from shore and safety. But as Franny’s history begins to unspool—a passionate love affair, an absent family, a devastating crime—it becomes clear that she is chasing more than just the birds. When Franny's dark secrets catch up with her, how much is she willing to risk for one more chance at redemption?
Epic and intimate, heartbreaking and galvanizing, Charlotte McConaghy's Migrations is an ode to a disappearing world and a breathtaking page-turner about the possibility of hope against all odds.
Bantering Books Review
I’ve been fortunate to have read many beautifully written books over the years. But I can think of none more stunning than Charlotte McConaghy’s Migrations.
For this reason, I’ve put off writing my review. Partly out of fear – I’ve been afraid I’d be unable to adequately convey the depth of my connection to this novel. And partly out of sorrow, because I know that once my review is written I will begin to let Migrations go. The memory of it will fade, regardless of how tightly I cling to it.
The novel tells the story of Franny Stone, an Irish woman living in a future world where all the wild animals are gone. There are no bears, no wolves, no lions – they’ve died off. And she has made it her mission to follow the last Arctic terns as they make their final migration from Greenland to Antarctica.
Migrations is haunting. Intoxicating. Chilling. I didn’t just read it – I experienced it. Surrounded by McConaghy’s hypnotic and atmospheric writing, I heard the melodic churning of the Irish Sea and tasted its saltiness. My skin burned from the icy Arctic air. And the exquisite sparseness of the prose rendered me breathless, the sharp words deeply cutting to my core.
As did Franny’s story. For it is not a happy one. Born with an itch to wander, Franny has never been able to stay in one place. She always leaves those she loves, wounding them, no matter her longing to remain. And sadly, she has been left, too, and knows loss and tragedy intimately. Hers is a heartbreaking life.
Migrations is a love song to our natural world. It’s a boundless, passionate romance between a woman and a man. And it’s a hopeful tale of a broken soul in desperate need of redemption.
Read it. Experience it.