by Joanne Skerrett
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Pub Date 01 Aug 2023 | Archive Date 09 Jan 2024
A grieving Hector Peterson and his estranged father Winston Telemacque arrive on the lush island of Dominica in 2017 to spread his mother’s ashes when Hurricane Maria strikes. Amid the devastation, the fragile peace between father and son is tested as long-buried family secrets at the heart of Hector’s identity are unearthed. Hector faces down his failed marriage, shipwrecked career, and his own failures as a father, while Winston, after three decades of striving as an immigrant in Boston, seeks to reclaim the losses from a painful childhood and the bloody betrayal by his one true love. In Island Man, the ruins of past and present are reconciled and shattered generational bonds are restored.
“In Island Man, Joanne Skerrett has written an impressive novel that examines the passionate loyalties and difficult choices inspired by the demands of community, family, and love against the dramatic backdrop of the repression of Dominica's Rastafarian community and the hero's migration to America. This satisfying novel takes the reader into the heart of the immigrant experience, what is found, what is left behind, what is lost, and, finally, what is claimed. You will find yourself dreaming, aching, and yearning with a cast of characters whose lives span generations and will remain with you long after the last page.”—Marita Golden, American novelist, nonfiction writer, professor, and co-founder of the Hurston/Wright Foundation
“When I read the opening paragraph of Joanne Skerrett’s fast-paced novel, Island Man, I knew my plans for the day had to be changed. The story starts with a Category 5 hurricane and what follows is hurricane-strength winds that fan a blazing and expertly constructed plot. Skerrett’s well-developed characters are alive; you can hear them breathe between the lines. It feels as if I know them. One of the highest tributes readers can pay to a book and its author is to admit that the story is so gripping, the prose so unrelenting and masterful that they could not put it down. Island Man is that kind of book. I could not wait to find out what happened after each chapter ended. The story of loss and redemption, twists and surprises, is powerful and necessary. It is timely, even as it spans decades; Dominica and Boston. Skerrett’s Island Man is glorious."—Katia D. Ulysse, author of Drifting and Mouths Don’t Speak
Marketing: Pre-pub buzz-building campaign
- Online marketing
- Social media campaign
- Targeted email marketing
- Community outreach
- Text-generated flash fiction campaign ahead of launch
- e-newsletters and websites
- Book club outreach
- Library outreach
- Course adoptions
- Media attention
- Online review and feature attention
- Local author promotion: Roseau, Dominica; Boston, MA; Washington, DC
- Social Media Campaign
- Book & author festival outreach
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 12 members
A tale about trauma, tragedy and healing. This is a story about a father losing himself and finding himself in a son he never knew he had and about a son finding himself in the father he never knew. Hector discovers his father Winston, his past and his root's amidst a storm that was in his life with his divorced wife Leandra. All this while losing the person he called both mother and father all these years.He discovers more about his father than his mother on their trip to spread her ashes in the place that she wanted.