"Winner of FIVE Book Awards: 2014 Independent Publishers Award - Silver Medal Best Regional Fiction (Canada East); 2014 New York Book Festival (Hon Men) Fiction; 2014 San Francisco Book Festival (Hon Men) Fiction; 2014 Great Northwest Book Festival (Hon Men) General Fiction; 2015 USA Best Book Award (Finalist) Literary Fiction."
Strum is an intricate cross-cultural tale with warm, compassionate and ultimately human characters that seek self-understanding and love in hopes of finding something fulfilling and true in themselves. Each fascinating character discovers along the path the inevitable hardships of passionate love, cultural boundaries, surprise, slighted expectations, and heartbreak, before experiencing redemption.
Bernard, a deaf young woodworker, is drawn into an old growth forest in rural Québec by mysterious and compelling music. Summoned there by the spirits of his Iroquois and European great-grandparents, he witnesses a colossal 800-year old cedar fall literally at his feet, and nearly loses his life salvaging a portion of the great tree to craft an instrument worthy of the music he hears.
His creation of two exquisite classical guitars imbued with the spirits of his ancestors sets in motion an intricate yet intimate story of turbulent times and tumultuous family relationships. From a convent in the French Alps to the jungles of Southeast Asia to an opera house in Sydney - Strum is a sweeping tale told against a backdrop of forbidden but enduring love, blind faith, war, and the legacy of six generations of a mixed-race family torn by tragedy but bonded by a music destined to reunite them.
Imbued with the spirituality of the greatest international language - music - Strum gives us a glimpse into a very personal North American-European-Asian universe that reads like biography, historical fiction, romance, fairy tale, ghost-story, travel-guide, music appreciation text, and prayer all at once. It acclaims the inter-connectivity of everything, living and material, that weaves the tapestry of a life well-lived.