cover image HOUSE ON THE RIVER: A Summer Journey

HOUSE ON THE RIVER: A Summer Journey

Nessa Rapoport, . . Harmony, $22 (160pp) ISBN 978-1-4000-4887-8

Rapoport, who has published essays and stories in the New York Times , the Forward and the Jewish Week , addresses her family history and the power of place in this philosophical, indulgent and moving meditation. She journeys with her family back to the Ontario cottage where she spent her childhood summers, savoring memories of observing the Sabbath ("after the Sabbath clock has shut the one remaining reading light, I tip-toe onto the screened porch and shiver into my bed, waiting fraught moments until my body warms the sheets") and the public library ("If you took out a book you longed to read, you were permitted to return it the following summer, a privilege I found intoxicating"). Rapoport writes beautifully—sometimes preciously—about motherhood, tradition, displacement and the busy hum of modern life juxtaposed with the placid quietude of the Canadian wilderness. She doesn't hesitate to imbue her reflections with a sense of the divine, even when writing about the mundane (e.g., on the slow pace on the lake: "The boat confers on daily life a profound stillness, an unexpected antidote to genetic impatience"). Similar to Joan Anderson's A Year by the Sea , Rapoport's poetic ruminations reverberate with a nostalgic, wistful tone, always evocative and often poignant. Photos. Agent, Henry Dunow. (On sale July 13)

Forecast: Author interviews out of New York could garner Rapoport an audience among Jewish women readers, and Harmony plans to market the book at Jewish book fairs.