The Stone Beach by Kim Chatel
Review by Susan Stephenson (www.coffscoastwriters.com)
Right from the introduction, you can tell The Stone Beach is a one-of-a-kind story. “The sun was dark shades of pink
and red. The magic light burnished the leaves gold and painted the garden in dream colors.” That picture sets the scene
for an elegantly-written tale that is hard to classify but easy to enjoy.
characters are compelling and believable. Protagonist, Caroline, is a young teen on the cusp of womanhood. She’s just
started her last year of Middle School with the group of friends she’s had for years. But there have been changes in
Caroline’s life. She’s recently moved further out of town, to a property near the river. Bored here and missing
her friends, she’s also begun to worry about her beloved cat, Casey.
teen will relate as Caroline tries to cope with life’s hurdles. Old friends, new friends, illness, romance and ghostly
cats shape Caroline’s future. She must grapple with issues of love, life and death; while in the background, there is
always the mysterious Stone Beach.
Chatel is a rising star in the world of literature and a born storyteller. In another incarnation, she’d have gauged
the effect of her tales in faces that watched and listened to her by flickering firelight. Like other excellent writers, she
knows that often, it’s what an author doesn’t say, that piques a reader’s interest and makes a book memorable.
Chatel cleverly allows the reader to draw her own conclusions in The Stone Beach.
Part coming-of-age tale, part ghost story, all enthralling reading, this is one of those special
novels not easy to forget. Long after you’ve finished reading it, you’ll find it stays with you. You’ll
remember the way it moved you. You’ll look around for your own Stone Beach.