Southern charm and wit infuse this faith based book about 31 year old, Nicole. She was born in Japan where she lived until she was 2, when a home fire killed her mother. Her father brought her back to live with her grandmother in North Carolina. Depression and guilt so plagued her father, that her mother's mother Ducee, became Nicole's true parent. But Nicole was not alone in a large extended family of aunts, uncles and cousins who were very close, and focused on a grand family reunion every year.
Nicole enjoyed her life with all these quirky relatives, and their long standing traditions, family recipes, and windoms. She was a middle-school English teacher and lover/blogger about all things fish and aquariums. Unfortunately, not knowing much about her life in Japan and her mother's death, has plagued her all of her life. Even when some relatives strongly encouraged her to explore her roots and learn more about the Japan parts of her life, fear and anxieties overcame her curiosity, until she connected with a reader of her blogs in Japan. He has lots of questions about his fish, but he soon realizes that he knows more about her life in Japan than Nicole does.
This is a great faith based story of love, loss, acceptance and courage. Ducee is the grandmother we all wish we had in our lives. Even the quirky relatives are inspiring. There is an especially engaging 3 year old autistic cousin, that adds wit, wisdom, and sometimes dread into the characters' lives. I definitely felt taken into Nicole's family as I watched her face her fears and TRUELY blossom into the woman that God had meant her to become.
Tried three times to read it, but didn't like it. Didn't like the way things were described. Believe the main prson telling the story is as "nutty" as, I believe it was, her aunt. Talking about fish, noises you make when coughing, one of her aunts always upset.....just didn't interest me or make a good story line. Will not finish reading it.
As I began reading Rain Song, I expected the plot to consist mainly of Nicole's experiences in Japan, but I soon realized that taking the steps to travel to Japan is the greatest part of the journey. Like me, Nicole Michelin does not like the thought of flying, and she has her share of insecurities. Like all of us, she has certain fears and past experiences that she must face before she begins to fully embrace her future. We may have dreams and desires to accomplish something, and we may know how to take a series of small steps to get there, but taking action is often the most difficult part. Opportunities can be overshadowed by our own fears.
Rain Song is a deeply moving novel that resonates with the part of each of us that has experienced loss, self-doubt, and fear. Written in first person, Nicole shares her daily thoughts about her relatives and past in a way that often jumps from topic to topic, much like our own minds. She has avoided her painful past and the mystery that surrounds the death of her mother, but the loss has left a gaping hole in her heart. Nicole deeply loves her aging grandmother, but fears losing the only mother-figure that she can remember. After beginning her correspondence with Harrison, she is given the opportunity to learn about the past, but only she can fully overcome her fears.
Alice Wisler has crafted a very well-written and thought-provoking novel that will both inspire and challenge each reader. I highly recommend Rain Song to be used as a book study as well because it offers many possibilities for group discussions.