Edda's mother is courted by the man responsible for her young father's death in a mine accident in a small Kentucky town.
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Edda Combs is eight years old when her father is killed in a strip-mining accident. Her mother, Frances, loved Ed Combs passionately and now mourns him deeply. Time passes, but the family doesn't get over Ed's death; Frances refuses to marry Henry John, a man who initially wants to help the family because of his part in the accident that killed Ed, but who comes to genuinely love them all. In the years that follow, Edda and her family learn a terrible truth about Ed, an ugly secret that almost destroys Frances. But she has a core of strength, found in Edda, too, that allows her to finally give up the past and take the family forward. Set in eastern Kentucky and told from Edda's point of view, the moving and powerful story describes the coming of age of a young girl and her family. Edda, her younger brother Jimmy, her high-principled mother Frances and her great-uncle Banker are that rare breed of fictional character: thoughtful individuals with active inner lives. This exceptional first novel never talks down to its audience; serious and disturbing topics are tackled but never sensationalized. The simple, honest writing is generously spiked with phrases of startling beauty. Books like this have the power to show young readers just what it is that great fiction can do. A Richard Jackson Book. Ages 12-up.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr 7-10 Following her graduation from college, Edda Combs delivers a poignant reminiscence of her father's death in a mining accident years earlier and her mother's subsequent emotional traumas. Her mother struggles to accept her husband's sudden death; courtship by Henry John, the man responsible for his death; and the discovery of her husband's past infidelity with her best friend. Davis breathes life into an interesting mix of characters in remote Cauley's Creek, Kentucky. From age eight, Edda copes with her mother's unpredictable behavior, cares for her baby brother, and sorts out her own grief. By the story's end, she is living in the present, out of college, on her own, and ``resting from her childhood.'' Robert Frost's poem ``Good-bye and Keep Cold'' introduces the theme that Edda must let go and trust her mother and her family ``to be okay on their own.'' Davis weaves together clear, snapshot recollections of past events with the simplicity of a child's uncomplicated viewpoint. Hints of the future propel the story forward. Readers will be drawn in by Edda's honesty and realistic struggles with adversity and the well spaced twists of plot. This is a fine first novel, rich in character, plot, and meaning. Gerry Larson, Chewning Junior High School, Durham, N.C.
Copyright 1987 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Orchard Books, 1987. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110531057151
Book Description Orchard Books, 1987. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0531057151