Title: Mary and O'Neil
Publisher: Dial Press, New York
Publication Date: 2001
Binding: Hard Cover
Book Condition: Very Good +
Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good
Signed: Signed by Author
Edition: First Edition
First printing, full number line. Signed, inscribed (somewhat boldly, and I'm not talking about the penmanship), and signed again by the author on the title page: "Justin Cronin / Colgate '01 / To S-- / Oh, what the hell. Thanks for the sex! / J Cronin." Eight stories; the author's debut. The book is unmarked; spine slant; corners sharp, spine ends bumped. The dust jacket is not price-clipped (original price $21.95); edgewear at spine ends and corners; staining to tail of spine, from damp exposure; Brodart protected. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 006384
Synopsis: A luminous work of fiction that celebrates the uncommon in common lives, and the redemptive power of love.
Mary and O'Neil frequently marveled at how, of all the lives they might have led, they had somehow found this one together. When they met at the Philadelphia high school where they'd come to teach, each had suffered a profound loss that had not healed. How likely was it that they could learn to trust, much less love, again?
In Justin Cronin's tender, heartwise debut, eight stories trace the lives of these two vulnerable young people as they rediscover in each other a world alive with promise and hope.
From the formative experiences of their early adulthood to marriage, parenthood, and beyond, each chapter illuminates the moments of grace that enable Mary and O'Neil to make peace with the deep emotional legacies that haunt them: the sudden, mysterious death of O'Neil's parents, Mary's long-ago decision to end a pregnancy, O'Neil's sister's battle with illness and a troubled marriage.
Like the work of Alice Hoffman, Cronin's fiction resonates with magical nuance and unexpected encounters -- a beautiful young girl who appears to Mary one night, draped in a cloud of stars; an autistic child who reveals a life-changing secret; a woman O'Neil mistakenly dials the night their first child is born -- that edify this young couple's intimate bond and affirm their faith in the future.
From the Back Cover:
?An astonishingly good first novel...fully engaging from the
first paragraph. What a gift: to be able to live
alongside these people for a while.?
?Ann Patchett, Chicago Tribune
?A literary love story...about the fragility of good fortune
and the accidental ways of finding happiness.?
?Justin Cronin must have been a novelist in an earlier life. What
else could account for the mature insight and the beautifully
controlled technique we find in his debut novel?...Cronin
succeeds, touchingly and tenderly, in portraying life
itself as a triumph of hope over experience.?
?The Boston Globe
?Justin Cronin?s Mary and O?Neil is that rare thing: a wholly
engrossing story of the ordinary life.?
?Madison Smartt Bell, author of All Souls? Rising
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