--the spirit of someone recently dead that returns to beckon the one it truly loves to the other side."" So Kate's dying...

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THE BECKONER

--the spirit of someone recently dead that returns to beckon the one it truly loves to the other side."" So Kate's dying grandmother described the legendary beckoner, and so 14 years later a 22-year-old Kate encounters a young man, dark and handsome like her father, beckoning her with promises of love on the shore of the Oregon coast. In an attempt to recover from a boyfriend's desertion and a grinding life as chief support for her clinging mother and three younger siblings, Kate has sought out the same Oregon spot where her father took her to recover from her grandmother's death. Six years after that first visit, her father had abandoned his family, and now Kate learns that he too had come here, built a house in the woods, then disappeared a couple of years before her present stay. Kate moves into her father's house with dreams of preparing it for his return, then is devastated to learn from a neighbor of his death in Mexico not long before. During the course of the novel, though, she establishes her independence, makes friends with the local residents (including a supportive young man who shows signs of becoming a closer friend), and gains enough emotional strength to separate herself from her family and put the beckoner to rest. The progress of Kate's recovery is convincing enough; but the telling tends to be dense and wordy, without the depth or substance that would justify so extended a treatment. It's all presented as entries in Kate's journal--an exercise related to her desire to be a writer--and written with a sort of banal formality that often drags.

Pub Date: April 9, 1980

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Harper & Row

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1980