The New Moon's Arms
By Nalo Hopkinson
(Grand Central Publishing, Hardcover, 9780446576918, 336pp.)
Publication Date: February 2007
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First it's her mother's missing gold brooch. Then, a blue and white dish she hasn't seen in years. Followed by an entire grove of cashew trees. When objects begin appearing out of nowhere, Calamity knows that the special gift she has not felt since childhood has returned-her ability to find lost things. Calamity, a woman as contrary as the tides around her Caribbean island home, is confronting two of life's biggest dramas. First is the death of her father, who raised her alone until a pregnant Calamity rejected him when she was sixteen years old. The second drama: she's starting menopause. Now when she has a hot flash and feels a tingling in her hands, she knows it's a lost object calling to her. Then she finds something unexpected: a four-year-old boy washes up on the shore, his dreadlocked hair matted with shells. Calamity decides to take the orphaned child into her care, which brings unexpected upheaval into her life and further strains her relationship with her adult daughter. Fostering this child will force her to confront all the memories of her own childhood-and the disappearance of her mother so many years before.
"A significant figure and a singular talent...A most impressive work, The New Moon's Arms has everything a reader could want: a compelling storyline with mysteries at its heart; a firm rooting in myth and history; keen social sense; and, most importantly, a focal character it is impossible not to fall in love with. It is a novel that sweeps the reader into its world: vivid and richly nuanced, utterly realistic yet still somehow touched with magic. Hopkinson's writing is lush and note-perfect...The dialogue crackles, and Calamity's narrative voice is direct and winning....one is left with a sense of wonder."—The Toronto Star
"The New Moon's Arms is a dance of lost-and-found. Hopkinson knows not to get too sentimental, thanks in large part to her heroine's unsinkable sense of humor. It let me hear the mermaids singing."—Washington Post Book World
"Considerable talent for character, voice, and lushly sensual writing...her most convincing and complex character to date."—Locus
"Hopkinson has had a remarkable impact on popular fiction....[Her] work continues to question the very genre she adopts, transforming them from within through her fierce intelligence and her commitment to a radical vision that refuses easy consumption...With sly humor and great tenderness, [she] draws out the hope residing in age and change"—Toronto Globe and Mail
"Shows new depths of wisdom, humor, and insight . . . Like life, Hopkinson's novel doesn't resolve every mystery. But Hopkinson has answered the essential questions in The New Moon's Arms, and she's wise enough to know we need nothing more."—Seattle Times