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Many years ago, Iris Greenfeder's mother disappeared. They were living at Hotel Equinox where Iris's father was the manager and where Iris's mother wrote delicate, powerful fantasies. Then she took a train and never returned, dying in a hotel fire in Brooklyn where she was registered as another man's wife. Returning to Hotel Equinox, now a struggling academic, Iris needs to find the truth about her mother; some keys are held in those fantastical writings and others in the memories of those who knew her. Kay Greenfeder, it seems, was a woman without a past. But as Iris begins to untangle the secrets of years before, she realises that the past was very different to what she had believed, and much more dangerous...
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Carol Goodman's admirable second novel, The Seduction of Water, has much in common with her bestselling debut, The Lake of Dead Languages. Both feature heroines who are at crossroads in their lives and who choose to move backward and inward. In the first novel, the main character returns to teach at the woodsy private school where she had been a scholarship student, triggering the horrible repetition of the violence that had marred her senior year. In The Seduction of Water, the heroine returns to the woodsy hotel in the Catskills where her parents had worked, in the hope of uncovering her dead mother's secrets. Somehow, the book doesn't feel like a reiteration of the earlier novel, perhaps because the tone throughout is lighter and more sure.
Iris Greenfeder is a 36-year-old barely published New York writer and teacher whose long-term boyfriend, an artist, sees her schedule as strict and therefore will not spend the night, because he likes to get up and paint first thing every morning. When one of Iris's stories about her mother is picked up by a small literary journal with a well-connected editor, things start to happen for her. She becomes convinced that a summer out of the city, working as manager of the old hotel, will give her the perfect setting in which to pen a memoir of her writer mother, as well as an opportunity to look for the rumored manuscript of her mother's final book. But there are those who are just as determined to keep the dead woman's secrets in the grave. Only mildly suspenseful, and relying too much on coincidence, The Seduction of Water isn't the page-turner that Goodman's debut was, but patient readers may find it a richer and more satisfying novel overall. --Regina MarlerFrom the Back Cover:
“An atmospheric thriller, but a smart one with a racing story line.”—New York magazine“GOTHIC MYSTERY . . . Seduction enchants with its fairy-tale motif and sensuous atmospherics.”—People (Page-turner of the week)“TRULY A SEDUCTIVE READING EXPERIENCE . . . Grabs the reader on the first page and holds on for the entire journey.”—The Denver Post“LIKE THE BEST MYSTERIES, The Seduction of Water offers puzzles and twists galore but still tells a human story.”—The Boston Globe“[A] TAUT THRILLER . . .ANOTHER HOME RUN FOR CAROL GOODMAN . . .The Seduction of Water combines folk tales and gothic horror with a thoroughly modern story. . . . Though this is the kind of book you’ll stay up late reading, don’t go so fast you miss the beautiful lyrical writing.”—Burlington Free Press “The new novel more than redeems the promise of the first with a many-layered, subtle piece of fiction. . . . The reader steps into the story almost as one would step into a conversation with a good friend.”—The Denver Post“Goodman’s crisp, graceful writing keeps the reader engaged through the zigzagging plot. Lively and funny, Iris makes for a likable narrator. Throughout, the reader experiences pleasurable tension between wanting to find out what happens next and trying to savor the descriptions of place and people. . . . Fashioning one story from many, Goodman gives readers both an entertaining mystery and an intriguing glimpse into why we turn to stories in the first place.”—The Boston Globe“Gripping . . . Entrancing . . . A completely involving mystery cleverly tied in with several fairy tales.”—Booklist“VERY INTRIGUING AND SATISFYING.”—Charleston Post & Courier“Alluring . . . [An] atmospheric page-turner. . . Combining dark fairy tale themes with a modern tale of suspense, Goodman succeeds in crafting another captivating mystery.”—Pages magazine“With this exciting second book . . . Goodman establishes herself as a writer to watch in the field of literary thrillers.”—Library Journal(starred review)“Mystery, folklore, a thoroughly modern romance, a strong sense of place, and a winning combination of erudition and accessibility make this second novel a treat.”—Publishers Weekly“Goodman successfully plays along with the fairy-take formula but translates it so successfully that the world she creates—and the people who inhabit it—are entirely believable.”—Book Street USA
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Book Description William Heinemann, London, 2003. Hard Cover. Condition: Very Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Fine. 1st British Edition, 1st Printing. First British Edition, First Printing with full number line. Signed, without inscription, by author on the full tilte page. Unread Very Fine book with light toning to edges in Very Fine dust jacket. All our books are bubble wrapped and shipped in a sturdy box with Delivery Confirmation. NO remainder mark, NO previous owner markings or inscriptions, NOT price clipped, NOT a Book Club Edition, NOT an Ex-Lib. Dust jacket covered in protective clear wrapper. Seller Inventory # 009100