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Grasshopper

Vine, Barbara

1,439 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0609607898 / ISBN 13: 9780609607893
Published by Harmony Books, New York, NY, U.S.A., 2000
Condition: Fine Soft cover
From Reagan's Books (Aurora, CO, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Very nice First American Edition/Uncorrected Proof with sharp and bright wraps and black lettering on front and back. Nice clean and tight page block. No DJ as issued. SIGNED in person by Ruth Rendell on the full title page. Very sharp collectible copy for a Ruth Rendell/Barbara Vine collector. Bookseller Inventory # 001759

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Grasshopper

Publisher: Harmony Books, New York, NY, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 2000

Binding: Soft Cover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: None as Issued

Signed: Signed by Author

Edition: First American Edition/Uncorrected Proof

About this title

Synopsis:

Clodagh Brown loved climbing. First it was trees. Later, as a teenager, she would scale the electrical pylons that tower over the English countryside like giant grasshoppers -- and share the experience with Daniel, her first lover. As a young woman she'd walk for miles over London's rooftops, peering through windows into people's intimate lives in a nightly ritual that bound her closely to the small group of friends with whom she lived and climbed. Looking back on it, Clodagh would claim that her passion for heights saved her life -- but not without exacting a terrible cost....

Grasshopper is Ruth Rendell's ninth novel written using the pseudonym Barbara Vine. Under her own name, Ruth Rendell writes classic whodunits featuring Inspector Wexford and novels renowned for their mastery of psychological suspense. Her Barbara Vine novels are written in exquisitely crafted layers, peeled away page by page to expose the darkest longings and obsessions of the human heart.

Review:

A new novel from Barbara Vine (or Ruth Rendell, her alter ego) is always cause for celebration, and in this exceptional psychological thriller, she displays all her mastery of craft to draw the reader into an unfamiliar world. She paints a vivid picture of the roots of obsession in the history of a young woman whose love of high places has been marked by tragedy, guilt, and exile from her family's home.

Clodagh Brown has always been frightened by enclosed spaces and loved climbing, a phobia and passion that resulted in the death of her high school sweetheart. As a college student living in the basement of a distant relative's home in Maida Vale, a slightly shabby London neighborhood, she encounters a group of peers who share both of these psychological quirks and introduce her to the steep rooftops of her new surroundings. Clodagh soon falls in love with Silver, a young man whose top-floor apartment across from her flat houses a diverse and fascinating group of people. Their youthful idealism and moral certainties are often at odds with conventional values and legal niceties. While Clodagh and Silver carry the story, their peers present ample opportunities for Vine to showcase her talent for imagining a multiplicity of lives and personas--from Liv, the Swedish au pair who can clamber over rooftops like a mountain goat but is terrified of what awaits her on level ground, to Jonny, whose pathological need to dominate the others, particularly Liv, leads to the shocking and tragic denouement. When the climbers chance upon a top-floor flat where a couple and their adopted mixed-race son are hiding from the authorities (who would remove the child from their care), Vine's ability to alter pace without sacrificing story or character really stands out. Grasshopper is an acutely drawn, immensely satisfying book. --Jane Adams

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