I first read this book in 2000 and decided it was time to re-read it.
Codi has moved back to the place she grew up, where she had never fitted in. This time round she's teaching at the local high school and looking after her ageing father (even though for most of the novel she struggles to even see him once a week).
She gets back together with Loyd, who was briefly her boyfriend when they were teenagers. At the same time she becomes a passionate campaigner on the behalf of the townsfolk whose water supply is being polluted by industry. This spills over into her teaching, where she impresses colleagues and students alike with her 'spirited delivery of a relevant curriculum' while at the same time she feels she's walking a tightrope between telling the truth and inciting an uprising.
Kingsolver is an author who is very alert to environmental issues and manages (usually) to walk the tightrope between informing and ranting.
This is a fascinating novel that explores environmental issues as well as issues of belonging and identity. This time round though I found Codi very irritating and unbelievable, which meant I didn't enjoy the book as much as I had the first time round. Still worth reading though, but probably only once!
Animal Dreams by Barbara Kingsolver published by Abacus