Deraniyagala, Sonali

(Book - 2013)
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
On the morning of December 26, 2004, on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, Sonali Deraniyagala lost her parents, her husband, and her two young sons in the tsunami she miraculously survived. In this brave and searingly frank memoir, she describes those first horrifying moments and her long journey since. She has written an engrossing, unsentimental, beautifully poised account: as she struggles through the first months following the tragedy, furiously clenched against a reality that she cannot face and cannot deny; and then, over the ensuing years, as she emerges reluctantly, slowly allowing her memory to take her back through the rich and joyous life she's mourning, from her family's home in London, to the birth of her children, to the year she met her English husband at Cambridge, to her childhood in Colombo; all the while learning the difficult balance between the almost unbearable reminders of her loss and the need to keep her family, somehow, still alive within her.--Publisher description.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2013
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 0307962695
Branch Call Number: B-De443w 2013
Characteristics: 227 p. ;,20 cm


From Library Staff

Sometimes evil comes not from a person, but nature itself. On the morning of December 26, 2004, on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, Sonali Deraniyagala lost her parents, her husband, and her two young sons in the tsunami she miraculously survived. In this brave and searingly frank memoir, she de... Read More »

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Jan 14, 2014
  • JCLRachelSH rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Sonali Deraniyagala was vacationing with her family in Sri Lanka's Yala National Park on Christmas, 2004, when the deadliest tsunami in history killed her parents, husband, and two young sons in a single instant. It's a story so unfathomable that, even nine years later, Deraniyagala herself can hardly believe it happened to her. What she's finally shared in Wave is a brief account that is both shocking and — terribly, somehow — beautiful. She unsentimentally excavates all the ugly crevices of her grief. By opening up about the horror that swallowed her entire family, Deraniyagala has in some small, shadowy way created a space for Steve, Vikram, Mali, and her parents to live on. It is, in a word, astonishing.

Jan 08, 2014
  • suzannehb rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

This book is haunting. It has been said that time heals all wounds, and indeed, for this woman, time did begin to heal her wounds. But the loss, and that process, is the stuff of a real-life, hell on earth. I'm glad I read it because I believe her family, who are all dead, deserve to be read about and remembered.

Wave is a courageous and difficult memoir that follows the author in the months and years following the tsunami that his Sri Lanka on December 26, 2004. She captures her agonizing desperation as her world fractures and explodes with the loss of her parents, sons, husband and best friend in the disaster.
As she remembers the tsunami's terrible aftermath, her words draw us into the waves of her grief, the state of her mind, the confusion, disorientation and rage. The narrative moves slowly and with difficulty through her journey to remember, to grieve, to let go and to heal as she re-discovers the places and people in which her family remains embedded. Wave captures the slow growth of a lost and re-discovered life.

Jul 13, 2013
  • T_J_W rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

An amazing personal account of dealing with great loss and the long, slow process of coming to grips with tragedy. She shows us how she gradually was able to face her new life and the changes that she was forced / able to make to survive. A book that will stay with you a long time.

"On December 26, 2004 a powerful tsunami sped across the Indian Ocean, sweeping away everything along the shore in several countries that border the sea and taking the lives of 250,000 people – both vacationers and residents. At the time, London-based economist Sonali Deraniyagala and her family were in Sri Lanka visiting her parents. Deraniyagala survived the wave, but lost her husband, both children, and her parents. In this memoir, she details her devastation and despair from their loss, but also celebrates their lives through the memories she recounts. The writing process becomes for Deraniyagala a path to healing." May 2013 Biography and Memoir newsletter http://www.nextreads.com/Display2.aspx?SID=5acc8fc1-4e91-4ebe-906d-f8fc5e82a8e0&N=635358

This is a riveting read that will stay with you long after you finish it. Sonali's strength and ability to pen such a stark and honest memoir of loss is truly remarkable. It is candid, sad, and true - and it is worth reading.

May 10, 2013
  • GrandCru rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

on the acknowledgements page the first person she names is her therapist. no mention of seeing a therapist throughout the story. it would have been interesting to know how he helped her along.

Remarkable read..... such courage and strength to carry on.


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