A continuation of my series featuring novels that are set on Islands in Scotland. In my last 5 blogs I introduced novels of murder, mystery and suspense and I have discussed how the barren landscape, isolation, unpredictable weather and insider/outsider mentality can be used by the authors to heighten the suspense in these novels. In my next two entries I will introduce novels with themes involving mental health issues and how the Islands (especially the isolation) motivate the characters and contribute to the plot.
The primary character in “Emotional Geology” is a woman named Rose. She has had at least one suicide attempt, she has been institutionalized, and she has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. She is also obsessed with her ex-lover despite having had no contact with him for five years. She makes the decision to buy a house on a particularly isolated area on the Isle of North Uist. Her plan is to avoid people, enjoy nature, and get to work on her beloved art. She has hopes that she will be able to reduce her medications in order to regain some of her creativity.
She writes in a letter to her daughter “the locals have been kindness itself..” p.5 and one particular kind local may be a whole different sort of problem…or not. Culum is a single school teacher with his own set of baggage.
It is definitely not all clear sailing.
Rose’s story is told straight — no apologizing. A worthy read.