Not what I expected, but so good

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I finished Saint X a couple of days ago and I’ve been struggling with what to say about it. It didn’t turn out to be at all like I expected. Going in I thought it was a mystery, but it was so much more than that. Yes, there was a heavy dose of mystery that kept me guessing right up to the end, but it’s also a story about privilege, race, family, obsession, and how a single event (that is sometimes out of our control) can change the entire course of your life, and all those around you.

I just got back from a cruise to the Caribbean, where we spent time in some countries that, while beautiful, had been devastated by hurricanes and not had the money to rebuild. Where around the corner from every fancy resort there lay ruined buildings. Where half-sunk boats littered the harbors, and scraggly chickens roamed the streets. I had very mixed feelings about coming to a place to ‘have a good time’ when locals were so obviously struggling to get by in their everyday lives. We were told that tourism is their main source of income, and that if we didn’t come things would be worse. But it’s hard not to have some seriously mixed feelings, heaped with a big dose of guilt, when faced with the reality of everyday life in ‘paradise’. Saint X explores a lot of those feelings, and lets you hear the story from a variety of perspectives, which I really appreciated.

The audiobook was expertly narrated by several performers, and I’d definitely recommend it.