A collection of essays by novelist J.F. Riordan, Reflections on a Life in Exile is easy to pick up, and hard to put down. The cover will be familiar to any island visitor, and though not all the essays are set on the island many of them are. By turns deeply spiritual and gently comic, these brief meditations range from the inconveniences of modern life to the shifting nature of grief. Whether it's an unexpected revelation from a trip to the hardware store, a casual encounter with a tow-truck driver, the changing seasons, or a conversation with a store clerk grieving for a dog, J. F. Riordan captures and magnifies the passing beauty of the ordinary and the extraordinary that lingers near the surface of daily life.