The White Mary by Kira Salak
This is the first novel by adventurer/journalist Kira Salak. The author’s note states the much of the book is based on personal experiences. This is the story of adventurer/journalist Marika Veccera, her travels around the world and her journeys to find her writing idol- and while she’s at it, herself.
Salak has been to Papua New Guinea herself and wrote a non-fiction book about it. This came through in vivid colors, as the sections that took place in the jungle were believable and fascinating. When Marika was in PNG, it was hard for me to put the book down. Other visits to far off locales were not as riveting, but still interesting.
Unfortunately, part of the book takes place in Boston, and involves a love interest that seems fairly unbelievable as a character to me. The dialogue between the two main characters seems forced at times, and occasionally caused me to chuckle in disbelief. A few other of the stateside characters seemed forced as well, although her visits to Missouri were interesting and well done.
In all, this was a decent book that definitely kept my interest. It succeded with flying colors as an adventure story, did a decent job with its religious and philosophical overtones, and missed the mark (for me, at least) when it came to romance. If adventure is what you seek, The White Mary may be worth your time- for me, I plan on seeking out Salak’s non-fiction work- her eye for detail in exotic lands is apparent here, and likely works well in that context. ()