A Marker to Measure Drift

A Marker to Measure Drift

Book - 2013
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A New York Times Notable Book

A hypnotic, spellbinding novel set in Greece and Africa, where a young Liberian woman reckons with a haunted past. 

On a remote island in the Aegean, Jacqueline is living alone in a cave accessible only at low tide. With nothing to protect her from the elements, and with the fabric between herself and the world around her increasingly frayed, she is permeated by sensory experiences of remarkable intensity: the need for shade in the relentless heat of the sun-baked isl∧ hunger and the occasional bliss of release from it; the exquisite pleasure of diving into the sea. The pressing physical realities of the moment provide a deeper relief: the euphoric obliteration of memory and, with it, the unspeakable violence she has seen and from which she has miraculously escaped.

Slowly, irrepressibly, images from a life before this violence begin to resurface: the view across lush gardens to a different sea; a gold Rolex glinting on her father's wrist; a glass of gin in her mother's best crystal; an adoring younger sister; a family, in the moment before their fortunes were irrevocably changed. Jacqueline must find the strength to contend with what she has survived or tip forward into full-blown madness.
Visceral and gripping, extraordinary in its depiction of physical and spiritual hungers, Alexander Maksik's A Marker to Measure Drift is a novel about ruin and faith, barbarism and love, and the devastating memories that contain the power both to destroy us and to redeem us. 

Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2013
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780307962577
Branch Call Number: F Maksik
Characteristics: 221 pages ;,25 cm


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Sep 30, 2015

Until the middle of the book I reveled of language of the author. Then - is becoming tedious. The book is, in my opinion, is about how to maintain dignity in the most difficult conditions for surviving. And also - everywhere there are "good souls" who lend a helping hand to someone in need, even if he did not ask for it.

Jan 15, 2015

this book was stunningly well-written and beautiful

Jul 31, 2014

extremely well-paced, taut story of surviving(?)... of living in the moment... of knowing that looking back is horrendous and often looking forward is useless. I was very moved by this character and her unfolding history. Maksik is a brilliant writer-

mrubinbooks Mar 28, 2014

I just finished reading this book, and it touched and saddened me as no book has in a long time. I will not forget this book, and I will be haunted by it, and thinking about it, for a very long time. It is exquisitely written, and depicts Jacqueline's pain almost too clearly.

Feb 25, 2014

I loved this book. I found it touching and beautiful. A deep depiction of the survival of body and spirit after devastation. I have already recommended it to others. Beautiful description of landscapes, sea and human relationships. I picked it up mostly because the title intrigued me. I was not disappointed.

rowanquincy Nov 29, 2013

Too violent for me. I didn't ever feel a connection to the main character, she just seemed blank throughout the whole book. I won't be looking for more books from this author.


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