What is the spirit of the Water Dancer?

Book Review of The Water Dancer: A Novel

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I wrote an earlier article in Thrive Global, “Why who is the storyteller matters.” The Water Dancer is a story that moves between heartbeats of a mystic to tears of a slave.

First disclaimer, I purchased the book to read for a book club.  I am partial to non-fiction and had no plans of reading this author’s first novel nor have I read any of his books. 

It took me a very long time to finish the book, in fact the book club never met to discuss it.  I was committed to read the book but the pandemic interrupted my stride.   I would stop and it would take long periods of time to re-start.  Then I found the nest of the story, the transformation of lives once caged now literally free like birds.  I was spell-bound by the old and new symphonies sung on the water by a slaves and their conductors seeking the promised land.

The pace picked up and toward the end I was almost sad to say good bye to those who learned to co-exist in the underground of their souls.

What became clear to me was that stories and their storytellers’ matter.  The storytelling here is not about words on a page — that you can get anywhere.  The story here is about how souls came together for salivation and how their spirits learned to dance on the water.

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