Shelter by Frances Greenslade

Shelter

Frances Greenslade

Maggie and her sister Jenny grow up in the backwoods of British Columbia. When their father dies, their mother can't support them alone and leaves them living with friends. She never returns and the girls learn to depend on each other but never give up hope of seeing her again. An emotional novel of sisterly love and survival, I loved it!

Extract

We did not try to look for our mother. She was gone, like a cat who goes out the back door one night and doesn’t return, and you don’t know if a coyote got her or a hawk or if she sickened somewhere and couldn’t make it home. We let time pass, we waited, trusting her, because she had always been the best of mothers. She’s the mother, that’s what we said to each other, or we did in the beginning. I don’t know who started it. That’s not true. It was me. Jenny said, 'We should look for her.' I said, 'She’s the mother.' When I said it, I didn’t know the power those few words would take on in our lives. They had the sound of truth, loaded and untouchable. But they became an anchor that dragged us back from our most honest impulses.
We waited for her to come to get us and she never did.

Parallels
  • The Girls by Lori Lansens
  • Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier