"We was a term she hadn't uttered in a while. For Abigail, there was no more we. To her, we meant her family, her husband and son. Her main frame of reference was as we: We bought a new house. We're having a baby. We're going out to eat. Now all that remained was I. It was the second of only two one-letter words in the entire dictionary, the first being A. Each was defiantly singular. The language would be nothing without them. Abigail felt she was nothing without we. She missed we."
When life as she knows it ends one night in heartbreaking tragedy, Abigail Harker seeks refuge at the lighthouse on Chapel Isle, a secluded island in North Carolina's Outer Banks. It was where her husband loved to go as a boy. Where she hopes to be able to grieve in peace. But the caretaker's cottage isn't exactly the haven she thought it would be: it's isolated and rundown, very rundown, and it's also apparently haunted by Wesley Jasper, the former lighthouse keeper who experienced his own tragedy in 1902. And while many of the islanders are friendly and welcoming, some are not. And the words that Abby once loved as a lexicographer seem to have failed her. For there are no words to deal with her loss. Still, she's doing her best to keep moving forward. But then there's a rash of robberies on the island. And an approaching hurricane. And Abby begins to think coming to Chapel Isle might not have been such a good idea after all.
"Whether you stay here in Chapel Isle or take the next ferry home, it won't make a bit of difference. It's like trying to serve two masters. You've got the grief and you've got your life. The one you choose to serve is up to you."I loved this book: the lyrical writing, the exploration of words and language, the quirky cast of island characters, and Abby's own reinvention of her life. Ellen Block is an amazing writer, and The Language of Sand is a magical story full of hope and heart. There's nothing I would change about it. Best of all, there's a sequel: The Definition of Wind.