Lee Smith On Agate Hill: A Novel

ISBN 13: 9781565124523

On Agate Hill: A Novel

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9781565124523: On Agate Hill: A Novel
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A dusty box discovered in the wreckage of a once prosperous plantation on Agate Hill in North Carolina contains the remnants of an extraordinary life: diaries, letters, poems, songs, newspaper clippings, court records, marbles, rocks, dolls, and bones. It's through these treasured mementos that we meet Molly Petree.

Raised in those ruins and orphaned by the Civil War, Molly is a refugee who has no interest in self-pity. When a mysterious benefactor appears out her father's past to rescue her, she never looks back.

Spanning half a century, On Agate Hill follows Molly’s passionate, picaresque journey through love, betrayal, motherhood, a murder trial—and back home to Agate Hill under circumstances she never could have imagined.

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Book Description:

A dusty box discovered in the wreckage of a North Carolina plantation house contains the remnants of an extraordinary life: an 1870s diary of a young girl, letters, poems, songs, newspaper clippings, court records, marbles, rocks, dolls, and bones. It’s through these treasured mementos that we meet the unforgettable heroine of Lee Smith’s new novel.

Raised in the smoldering ruin of the post–Civil War American South, young Molly Petree, now orphaned, has no intention of wasting time on self-pity. She means to live her life to its fullest. So, when a mysterious benefactor appears out of her father’s past to rescue her, she doesn’t look back—until she is an old woman and returns to the farm on Agate Hill. Spanning half a century, On Agate Hill tells the story of a woman who risks everything to remain true to herself. It’s a novel of obsessive love, unexpected adventures, and luck—both good and bad. Like a ballad of the Old South, Molly Petree’s tale resonates with passion, humor, and drama.

Lee Smith, a virtuoso of voice and vision, creates flesh-and-blood characters tempered with equal doses of comedy and tragedy. Like her popular and beloved novels Oral History and Fair and Tender Ladies, On Agate Hill is storytelling at its very best.

From the Inside Flap:

Molly Petree, orphaned by the Civil War, is by her own definition "a spitfire and a burden. I do not care. My family is a dead family, and this is not my home, for I am a refugee girl."

Raised in the ruins of a once prosperous plantation on Agate Hill in North Carolina, she's a refugee who has no interest in self-pity. To document her headstrong life, she collects its artifacts—her lifelong diaries, letters, poems, songs, newspaper clippings, court records, marbles, rocks, dolls, bones (some human, some not).

When a mysterious benefactor appears out of her father's past to rescue her, teenaged Molly Petree never looks back. Taking what she is offered, she saves herself and then risks everything to hold true to her nature and to true love. She casts aside two prosperous, well-born suitors to marry a dashing—and philandering—mountaineer only to be accused of his murder. The end of Molly Petree's story is as unpredictable and as passionate as her own wide-open heart.

Spanning half a century, Lee Smith's portrait of a fiery Southern woman recalls the South from Reconstruction to the Roaring Twenties—and, in the process, gives us Molly Petree, living and breathing, gripping the reader's arm as the story unfolds.

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Lee Smith
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