Readers of this blog might remember an interview I did with writer, illustrator and publisher Kathy Creamer a few weeks ago. Today, it’s time for her to choose her favourite book of 2015, one she’s read several times!
My favourite book of the year: Mother Land by Dmetri Kakmi
I first read this book a few years ago and loved it for its amusing characterization of people and their eccentricities, its search for personal identity, its strong sense of place and rich descriptive writing.
Mother Land is a memoir of a young boy’s childhood, set in the 1960’s, on the Turkish island of Bozcaada (formerly Tenedos). Born in Turkey of Greek parentage, Dmetri Kakmi reveals the deeply emotional battle with the two different cultures that dwell within him, and of the ever-increasing hostility of Turkish rule, and the raw injustices of adult authority.
What I loved most about Mother Land was the evocation of an idealistic isle of childhood, where bare-footed, sun-kissed children run free to roam through the summer countryside and the villages, experiencing all of its delights and horrors. A place where time is unhurried, and where everyone knows everyone else’s business in a community where people look out for each other – and gossip, whether out of genuine concern, or pure mischievousness. I adored the erratic episodes of unrequited love between the hirsute Ephigenia and the brooding fisherman, Zotico, which were deliciously amusing, and it is exactly those wonderfully fresh and descriptive elements about the intriguing human condition that keep me coming back to read this book again and again.
Kathy Creamer is a writer, illustrator and publisher. Her website is at http://kathycreamer.com/