by Vendela Vida
REVIEWED BY MARIA SPEIDEL
When New Yorker Clarissa Iverton happens upon her birth certificate, she realizes that everyone she trusts, including her freshly deceased dad, knows that her biological father was a man she’s never met. Since her mother walked out years earlier, Clarissa, the protagonist of Vida’s accomplished second novel, must go to Finland to find the stranger who fathered her.
Vida, who is married to Dave Eggers, propels Clarissa alone into the dark snowscape where her birth secrets are buried. She perfectly captures the emotional dimension of Clarissa’s search, showing that the truth, no matter how pockmarked, is preferable to fiction.