Light on Snow
by Anita Shreve
Little, Brown and Company
Reviewed by Anna Navin, February 11, 2007
Donning snowshoes, Robert Dillon and his 12-year-old daughter Nicky, started out on a walk before supper on a cold winter evening. What should have been a routine hike changed dramatically when they heard a faint wail from the timber. First thinking it was an animal, they almost passed on by but something made them investigate. Wrapped in a soiled towel inside a sleeping bag was a newborn baby, just hours old.
Living at the end of a long, almost impassable lane, they were surprised to receive a visitor a few days later, who helped them learn the true story of this abandoned child. However, knowing this individual and this story placed them in a position where a decision had to be made as to what the right thing, both legally and morally, really was.
While this story would appear to be about an abandoned baby, it is also the poignant story of how Robert Dillon, who had lost his wife and an 18-month-old daughter in a tragic accident, learned to rebuild his life with the help of Nicky, who gave him the courage and strength he needed.
When I read one of Anita Shreve's novels, I feel as though it could easily be factual. Not everything turns out the way you might hope for, but just like life, you learn to deal with the hand you are dealt and continue on.