Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Vacationland by Sarah Stonich

Vacationland by Sarah Stonich

In the heat of summer people escape to a northern Minnesota resort, on the Canadian border known as Naledi.  The Naledi resort is a central character in Vacationland and it is a place you will visit again and again.  Each story in Vacationland intersects and connects to create a novel with depth, humor and wit.

The owner of the Naledi resort is an old Czech man named Vac Machutova and he raises his son there and then after his son dies in a plane crash, he raises his granddaughter Meg there as well.  Meg is present in all of the stories in some way and she is integral to Vacationland.  There are 15 short stories that stand alone but interconnect with Meg leading you on your tour of Naledi through the years.

Reading Vacationland, I felt like a visitor at the resort.  I knew people by name, who was dating whom, and some of life's tragedies and triumphs.  I felt I knew the lake, the land and the landscape, the storms, the bog, the snowdrifts, the wind and even the night sky.  Vacationland brought me to a place that felt so close to my heart that I want to return there.  I think I need a sequel.  I don't think I can let go.

Stonich will dazzle you with her storytelling skills. As a reader you will discover that Stonich is a great writer that is descriptive and crafts her sentences with precision.  Each word seems carefully chosen and placed.  Sarah Stonich deserves a prize for Vacationland to hang on her wall with the deer antlers because this book is stunning.

I laughed and I cried and discovered I don't want to go home, I want to live in Vacationland forever.