Summary

Danticats last book, the memoir Brother, Im Dying, was a National Book Critics Circle Award winner and a National Book Award finalist, and her fiction has won accolades, too; now this best-selling author returns to fiction for the first time in nine years. Claire Limye Lanme ("Claire of the Sea Light"), whose mother died in childbirth and whose fisherman father has made the wrenching decision to give her a better life by relinquishing her, goes missing just before her seventh birthday. As the entire community searches for her, secrets emerge that clarify our relationships with one another and with the natural world, even as we see the beauty and heartbreak of Haiti.


From the best-selling author of Breath, Eyes, Memory and Krik? Krak!, a stunning new work of fiction that brings us deep into the intertwined lives of a small town where a little girl, the daughter of a fisherman, has gone missing.

Claire Limyè Lanmè--Claire of the Sea Light--is an enchanting child born into love and tragedy in a seaside town in Haiti. Claire's mother died in childbirth, and on each of her birthdays Claire is taken by her father, Nozias, to visit her mother's grave. Nozias wonders if he should give away his young daughter to a local shopkeeper who lost a child of her own, so he can give her a better life. But on the night of Claire's seventh birthday, when he makes the wrenching decision to do so, she disappears. As Nozias and others look for her, painful secrets and startling truths are unearthed among a host of men and women whose stories connect to Claire, her parents, and the town itself. Told with the piercing lyricism and economy of a fable, Claire of the Sea Light explores what it means to be a parent, child, neighbor, lover, and friend, while indelibly revealing the mysterious connections we share with the natural world and with one another, amid the magic and heartbreak of ordinary life.