Life Is a Circle… on the Surface

While the main setting is fictitious the tale could be anyone’s. a Circle on the Surface tells the story of Una and Enman, a couple married in the time of war and hardship, and the community they live in that could easily be our own. The struggles and triumphs of discovering one’s own path are written beautifully by Halifax author, Carol Bruneau who even includes a town we know well with mentions of Pictou in her tale.
While the community of Barrein was created, the town is close to the city of Halifax and adventures are taken on Citadel Hill. Being able to easily recognize these places I was able to connect well with the characters and fully understand their journey through suffering and discovery. We all can find our place within a circle.
“If I can’t see you, you can’t see me.” A phrase we can all relate to, remembering childhood games and being naïve enough to think closing our eyes made us invisible. A parable of the life of Una as well as Enman as they deal with aging parents and decisions that are taken away from them from outside sources.
Starting with a scene in the most recent past, you will quickly fall in love with Enman and his birthday girl Penny and be struck by the admission of what could be a life-altering occurrence. While we all struggle with our own battles and knowing when best to reveal a secret we have harbouring, it’s easy to feel the grief this man is filled with. We can all relate to waiting for the perfect time to act and knowing that there will never be a perfect time.
Set in 1943 the situations and feelings expressed throughout a Circle on the Surface are timeless and written masterfully so anyone can be part of the community Bruneau writes about. Creating a happy life together, Una and Enman take their respective pasts to the same table which is determined by illness and circumstance. While the war and threats from the Germans set the scene in rural Nova Scotia, battles that exist within the small town are raging but dismissed and ignored for what are deemed bigger issues.
Bruneau mixes hope with turmoil as she weaves the tales of those who could be our neighbours. To be released in September 2018 this story is one you could easily relate to and learn from.

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Sarah Butland
Sarah Butland welcomes fall as a time for regrouping as kids return to school, rinks and schedules while parents think of lunches and early mornings, but every season is about books for Sarah Butland. Whether reading on the shoreline in the cool air of autumn, beside a fire in the winter or amid the breathtaking rebirth of spring, good books by amazing local authors abound and take the reader to a brand new world! A Circle on the Surface offered Butland a new world and a new time!