Monday, June 1, 2009

What happened to Locke, CA?

I've been to Locke (near the Sacramento River) several times over the years so when I found Shawna Yang Ryan's book Water Ghosts, I bought it because I've been fascinated by the history of the place (a Chinese farming town). In preparation for this post, I wanted to let you know the location of Locke, but I couldn't find it on Google maps. Actually, because Locke is filled with atmosphere that speaks to another realm, I wouldn't be surprised if it really doesn't exist.

Anyway, that is another topic. What I like about Water Ghosts is the ethereal (in a gloomy way) setting ...perfect for the story and exactly how I remember the town. Her story takes place in 1928, but it seems the same today...a place caught in the past.

The powerful feeling or mood that envelops me with each sentence I read, reminds me that setting is important in writing. Since I'm on page 30,I don't know if she makes setting an acutal character, but the town is more than a background for the characters, it permeates the reader's senses making it as alive as any character.

If you read it, let me know what you think/feel about the setting.

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