ELLEN TOBY-POTTER THE AVERAGE HUMAN

ISBN 13: 9780099468684

THE AVERAGE HUMAN

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9780099468684: THE AVERAGE HUMAN

Every small town in America has one: the family whose daughters are perpetually pregnant and whose sons go directly from the eleventh grade to the county lock-up. In the town of Loomis, in rural New York, that family is the Mayborns. Long haunted by accusations of incest and infanticide, the Mayborns have become a tribal clan of pariahs, with a roster of monstrosities attached to their name.

June Mayborn, a fourteen-year-old with a preternatural sense of smell and a dubious code of morals, has an affair with a married candy-store owner. When the affair sours, June sets a deadly fire, accidentally killing an elderly man who had, over a decade before, established a cult-like commune in the foothills of Loomis. The subsequent funeral draws the beautiful and capricious Iris Utter, whose two-year-old son went missing from Loomis eight years earlier. Both Iris and her somber sixteen-year-old daughter, Lee, embark upon a dangerous and disturbing relationship with the Mayborns, which will both ravage and redeem their lives.

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About the Author:

Ellen Potter’s short stories have appeared in The Hudson Review, Epoch, Cimarron Review, and Seventeen, and her children’s book, Olivia Kidney (Philomel Books), will be published in June 2003. A native New Yorker, she now resides in rural upstate New York. The Average Human is her first novel.

From Publishers Weekly:

Reading Toby-Potter's dark, inventive first novel is akin to staring at a pointillist painting, nose against the canvas, and slowly stepping back until the seemingly random points converge to reveal a complete picture. That picture is a landscape of smalltown Loomis, upstate New York's answer to Southern Gothic. Loomis's oldest and most cursed family, the backwoods Mayborns, have been dogged by rumors of unspeakable horrors for more than 100 years; their sins seem to be physically represented in the "black and grotesquely shriveled" fingernails of the Mayborn women. June, 14, carries the telltale trait and is told that, because of it, "the world will always shun" her, as it has her ancestors. About to cross the Mayborns' path are two former cult members, manipulative head-turner Iris ("how reckless it was to have such beauty bestowed on a person like Iris") and her fastidious teenage daughter Lee, who also has shriveled, black fingernails. Mother and daughter dutifully return to Loomis for a cult reunion until Iris finds trouble and deserts Lee. The longer Lee lives in Loomis and investigates the Mayborns, the more she learns about herself and questions a possible "kink in her moral codes." Toby-Potter introduces one uniquely creepy character and one strangely plausible plot point after another, without losing her focus or confusing the reader. As the revelations build, the novel approaches its vibrant, jaw-dropping conclusion. Deliciously strange, this is a notable debut.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Ellen Toby-Potter
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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 200 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Mayborn family has cast its shadow over the small town of Loomis for generations. Accompanied by rumours of unnatural family unions, the Mayborns have sunk from their position as powerful landowners to become a white trash clan of pariahs. June Mayborn, a fourteen-year-old with a preternatural sense of smell and a dubious code of morals, lights a deadly fire, accidentally killing an aging cult leader. The subsequent funeral draws the beautiful and capricious Iris Utter and her sombre daughter, Lee, back to Loomis where eight years earlier Iris s son mysteriously disappeared. Needing answers to the past, they begin a dangerous and disturbing relationship with the Mayborns. This bold and original novel, spiked with dark humour, explores the boundaries of family ties and consequences of crossing them. Bookseller Inventory # AB99780099468684

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 200 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Mayborn family has cast its shadow over the small town of Loomis for generations. Accompanied by rumours of unnatural family unions, the Mayborns have sunk from their position as powerful landowners to become a white trash clan of pariahs. June Mayborn, a fourteen-year-old with a preternatural sense of smell and a dubious code of morals, lights a deadly fire, accidentally killing an aging cult leader. The subsequent funeral draws the beautiful and capricious Iris Utter and her sombre daughter, Lee, back to Loomis where eight years earlier Iris s son mysteriously disappeared. Needing answers to the past, they begin a dangerous and disturbing relationship with the Mayborns. This bold and original novel, spiked with dark humour, explores the boundaries of family ties and consequences of crossing them. Bookseller Inventory # AB99780099468684

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Book Description Vintage. Book Condition: New. 14 year old June Mayborn lights a deadly fire, accidently killing an aging cult leader. The funeral draws out Iris Utter and daughter Lee, who, needing answers to the past, begin a disturbing relationship with the Mayborns. Spiked with dark humour, this novel explores the boundaries of family ties and consequences of crossing them. Num Pages: 272 pages. BIC Classification: FA. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 200 x 130 x 16. Weight in Grams: 185. . 2004. Paperback. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780099468684

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Book Description Vintage, 2004. Book Condition: New. 14 year old June Mayborn lights a deadly fire, accidently killing an aging cult leader. The funeral draws out Iris Utter and daughter Lee, who, needing answers to the past, begin a disturbing relationship with the Mayborns. Spiked with dark humour, this novel explores the boundaries of family ties and consequences of crossing them. Num Pages: 272 pages. BIC Classification: FA. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 200 x 130 x 16. Weight in Grams: 185. . 2004. Paperback. . . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780099468684

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Book Description Vintage Publishing. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, The Average Human, Ellen Toby-Potter, The Mayborn family has cast its shadow over the small town of Loomis for generations. Accompanied by rumours of unnatural family unions, the Mayborns have sunk from their position as powerful landowners to become a white trash clan of pariahs. June Mayborn, a fourteen-year-old with a preternatural sense of smell and a dubious code of morals, lights a deadly fire, accidentally killing an aging cult leader. The subsequent funeral draws the beautiful and capricious Iris Utter and her sombre daughter, Lee, back to Loomis where eight years earlier Iris's son mysteriously disappeared. Needing answers to the past, they begin a dangerous and disturbing relationship with the Mayborns. This bold and original novel, spiked with dark humour, explores the boundaries of family ties and consequences of crossing them. Bookseller Inventory # B9780099468684

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