Cover Image: A Coastline Is an Immeasurable Thing

A Coastline Is an Immeasurable Thing

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Member Reviews

I'm drawn to story, especially the life stories of others. I also read to better understand the experiences of others. This book satisfied both of my preferences in a lovely way. 

In "A Coastline is an Immeasureable Thing," Mary-Alice Daniel interweaves history, geography, myth, and personal story in such a way as to make the reader ponder, reread, and reflect. Through honest, poetic writing, the author explores her origins and the complexities contained therein. She gives a window into her life in a way that is both beautiful to read and also demands thoughtful contemplation on the part of the reader. I come away from reading this book with a greater understanding of not only third culture kids, but also how origin stories are both complicated and hold immense worth. 

While I enjoyed reading this book and do not regret investing the time to do so, it was also a read that moved a bit slowly. I often felt it was not as much about the author as about her country of origin and its complexities, but this also made sense given the nature of the book. If you are looking for a traditional memoir full of personal story, this book is likely not for you. If, however, you are interested in exploring culture, identity, and origin through the lens of personal story, you won't be disappointed. 

*I received an advance reader copy of this book from the publisher.*
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This book is truly immersive, smart, compelling, and original. I'm blown away by Daniel's poetic, smooth, stunning prose and her ability to balance both evocative and beautiful language with a steady narrative and factual history and context. This memoir is a true feat and I'm so happy it exists. Daniel is a real talent and reading her work really educated me and provided so much nuance and complexity to my minimal understanding of so many things. The way she immerses her personal experience with her family, too, is both gentle and honest, and I really couldn't look away. Definitely one of the best works of nonfiction I've read in years.
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