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Vernon, Olympia

96 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0802117287 / ISBN 13: 9780802117281
Published by Grove Press, New York, 2003
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From Jack Skylark's Books (West Covina, CA, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Book and BroDart protected jacket are without faults. A gift quality copy. Signed by the author on the title page. First edition / first printing. Ships in bubble wrap in box. Bookseller Inventory # PC 97-4

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Eden

Publisher: Grove Press, New York

Publication Date: 2003

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


Scandalizing her rural Mississippi town when she draws a naked woman in the bible during Sunday School, precocious fourteen-year-old Maddy is made to spend the weekends caring for her terminally ill aunt, a relationship that results in her confrontations with disturbing secrets that overshadow their community. A first novel. 25,000 first printing.

From Publishers Weekly:

A young girl is sent to nurse her dying aunt in this arresting, uncompromising debut. Fourteen-year-old Maddy Dangerfield lives with her parents in rural Mississippi: her mother, Faye, obese and devoutly religious, is "a maid for damn near every white man in Pyke County"; her alcoholic, illiterate father, Chevrolet, works in a scrap yard and spends the family's money on whores and gambling. One of his sexual conquests was Faye's sister, Pip, who is estranged from the family as a result. To teach Maddy about mortality (and to assuage her own conscience), Faye sends Maddy to Pip's home on weekends to help care for her as she succumbs to breast cancer. What makes the book stand out is not its relatively simple plot, but Vernon's idiosyncratic prose style ("he laughed and folded his arms as if he controlled my vocabulary") and Maddy's stark, often surreal perception of the world. Her burgeoning sexuality is illustrated less by her crush on young laborer Landy Collins than by the way she describes the tangled mess of smells and sensations that define the people around her, who are "all, in some way, falling apart." The tone is relentlessly grim, infused with religious superstition, racism and death; macabre events-Chevrolet's mutilation at the hands of his mother-in-law, the death of a troubled orphan, the slaughtering of a hog-are scattered like land mines throughout. But what Vernon's story lacks in optimism, it more than makes up for with raw power and insight.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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