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Deafening

by

Deafening Cover

ISBN13: 9780871139023
ISBN10: 0871139022
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Review-A-Day

"There's not a single false gesture in Frances Itani's Deafening. Despite its subjects ? war, romance, disability ? it's a story of careful, measured emotion, bleached of all sentimentality. The publisher has positioned the novel as a debut in America, but Canadians have been reading Itani for decades, and every page of this story betrays the hands of a mature writer who knows exactly what she's doing....Indeed, there are passages here so beautiful that we can't help straining to hear more." Ron Charles, The Christian Science Monitor (read the entire CSM review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Elegantly written and profoundly moving, Deafening sent an uncommon roar through the literary world when it made its way into the hands of its first readers at this past year's Frankfurt Book Fair, and was immediately snapped up by twelve eminent publishers from around the world. Frances Itani's lauded debut novel is a tale of remarkable virtuosity and power, set on the eve of the Great War and spanning two continents and the life and loves of a young deaf woman in Canada named Grania O'Neill.

At the age of five, Grania — the daughter of hardworking hoteliers in small-town Ontario — emerges from a bout of scarlet fever profoundly deaf and is suddenly sealed off from the world that was just beginning to open for her. Her guilt-plagued mother cannot accept her daughter's deafness, so Grania's saving grace is Mamo, her indefatigable grandmother, who tries to teach her language from the inside out. But when it becomes clear that Grania can no longer thrive in the world of the hearing, her family sends her to live at the Ontario School for the Deaf, where, protected from the often-unforgiving hearing world outside, she learns sign language and speech.

After graduation Grania stays on to work at the school, and it is there that she meets Jim Lloyd, a hearing man. In wonderment the two begin to create a new emotional vocabulary that encompasses both sound and silence. But two weeks after their wedding, Jim must leave home to serve as a stretcher-bearer on the blood-soaked battlefields of Flanders. During this long and brutal war of attrition, Jim and Grania's letters back and forth — both real and imagined — attempt to sustain the intimacy they discovered in Canada, even while they are both pulled into cataclysmic events that will alter the world forever.

A magnificent tale of love and war, Deafening is also an ode to language — how it can console, imprison, and liberate, and how it alone can bridge vast chasms of geography and experience.

Review:

"An impressively daring first novel....Itani never loses control of her tricky material: the result is an artistic triumph." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

Review:

"War and deafness are the twin themes of this psychologically rich, impeccably crafted debut novel set during WWI....A timely reminder of war's cost, told from an unexpected perspective." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

Review:

"Itani's American debut unfolds with slow, deliberate eloquence and brilliantly described sights and sounds....Her original treatment of classic wartime romance will make Itani's readers want more." Brendan Driscoll, Booklist

Review:

"Deafening presents a unique dual adventure, delving simultaneously into the world of deafness and the horrible carnage (and explosive din) of trench warfare." Anita Lahey, Quill & Quire

Review:

"Readers in Canada have long known Itani for her award-winning poetry, short stories, fiction, and more, but she will be new to American audiences, who are sure to find this an intelligent, absorbing read. Highly recommended." Library Journal

Review:

"One of the big books of the fall....[Itani is] on the brink of a major literary success with Deafening, whose heroine Grania was inspired by her beloved hearing-impaired grandmother." Judy Stoffman, The Toronto Star (Canada)

Review:

"Deafening is a remarkable and absorbing first novel. Itani's writing is clear-headed and sure-handed; her strong characters will not leave you." Charles Frazier, author of Cold Mountain

Review:

"Deafening has a very particular grace and eloquence, and the spareness of the writing beautifully complements the power of the emotions which Frances Itani describes." Helen Dunmore, author of The Siege

Review:

"This exceptional novel moves from the silence of the deaf to the cacophony of 'the front' during World War 1. In between are the hopes and dreams which define our humanity. There are scenes in Deafening which will never be forgotten. From the haunting effects of a childhood disease to the random horrors of war, the uncertainties that become our certainties have seldom been so well explored. A remarkable accomplishment." Alistair McLeod, author of No Great Mischief, Winner of the IMPAC Dublin Award 2001

Review:

"Deafening is a tribute to Frances Itani's storytelling skills, an affecting and evocative look at those who inhabited a soundless world during the early years of the last century. Grania, a deaf girl growing up in a small Ontario town, is a truly memorable character and the story of her love for her young soldier husband is brilliantly recounted." Richard B. Wright, author of Clara Callan

Synopsis:

A tale of remarkable virtuosity and power. At the age of five, Grania — the daughter of hardworking hoteliers in small-town Ontario — emerges from a bout of scarlet fever profoundly deaf, and is suddenly sealed off from the world that was just beginning to open for her. Her mother cannot accept her daughter's deafness, so Grania's indefatigable grandmother tries to teach her language from the inside out. But when it becomes clear that Grania can no longer thrive in the world of the hearing, her family sends her to live at the Ontario School for the Deaf where she learns sign language and speech. After graduation Grania stays on to work at the school, and it is there that she meets Jim Lloyd, a hearing man. In wonderment the two begin to create a new emotional vocabulary that encompasses both sound and silence. But two weeks after their wedding, Jim must leave to serve as a stretcher-bearer on the blood-soaked battlefields of Flanders. During the war, Jim and Grania's letters — both real and imagined — attempt to sustain their intimacy, even while they are both pulled into cataclysmic events that will alter the world forever.

Synopsis:

War and deafness are the twin themes of this psychologically rich, impeccably crafted debut novel set during World War I. Itani's wonderfully felt tale is a timely reminder of war's cost, told from an unexpected perspective. Unabridged.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

LisaW, April 20, 2013 (view all comments by LisaW)
Wow. This book is stunning. Itani, a Canadian author, is absolutely amazing. I borrowed this book from a friend and have since purchased and devoured all of Itani's books. Her language is so incredibly rich and her stories so intimate and alive. This book truly brought the silence of deafness to life and wrapped it around me as I read the book. I still wear it is a coat. The characters, history, and place of this story are so intense that you find yourself lost when you finish the book because where you have gone and what you have experienced is so real. If you have not read Itani before you MUST read this book. A Canadian treasure to be sure!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Product Details

ISBN:
9780871139023
Author:
Itani, Frances
Publisher:
Atlantic Monthly Press
Location:
New York
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Romance - Historical
Subject:
Historical fiction
Subject:
World War, 1914-1918
Subject:
Love stories
Subject:
War stories
Subject:
Ontario
Subject:
Deaf women
Subject:
FICTION / Literary
Subject:
War & Military
Copyright:
Edition Number:
1st American ed.
Edition Description:
American
Series Volume:
107-273
Publication Date:
September 2003
Binding:
Hardcover
Language:
English
Pages:
400
Dimensions:
9.18x6.36x1.27 in. 1.48 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Languages » Deaf Studies » Deaf Culture

Deafening Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 400 pages Atlantic Monthly Press - English 9780871139023 Reviews:
"Review A Day" by , "There's not a single false gesture in Frances Itani's Deafening. Despite its subjects ? war, romance, disability ? it's a story of careful, measured emotion, bleached of all sentimentality. The publisher has positioned the novel as a debut in America, but Canadians have been reading Itani for decades, and every page of this story betrays the hands of a mature writer who knows exactly what she's doing....Indeed, there are passages here so beautiful that we can't help straining to hear more." (read the entire CSM review)
"Review" by , "An impressively daring first novel....Itani never loses control of her tricky material: the result is an artistic triumph."
"Review" by , "War and deafness are the twin themes of this psychologically rich, impeccably crafted debut novel set during WWI....A timely reminder of war's cost, told from an unexpected perspective."
"Review" by , "Itani's American debut unfolds with slow, deliberate eloquence and brilliantly described sights and sounds....Her original treatment of classic wartime romance will make Itani's readers want more."
"Review" by , "Deafening presents a unique dual adventure, delving simultaneously into the world of deafness and the horrible carnage (and explosive din) of trench warfare."
"Review" by , "Readers in Canada have long known Itani for her award-winning poetry, short stories, fiction, and more, but she will be new to American audiences, who are sure to find this an intelligent, absorbing read. Highly recommended."
"Review" by , "One of the big books of the fall....[Itani is] on the brink of a major literary success with Deafening, whose heroine Grania was inspired by her beloved hearing-impaired grandmother."
"Review" by , "Deafening is a remarkable and absorbing first novel. Itani's writing is clear-headed and sure-handed; her strong characters will not leave you."
"Review" by , "Deafening has a very particular grace and eloquence, and the spareness of the writing beautifully complements the power of the emotions which Frances Itani describes."
"Review" by , "This exceptional novel moves from the silence of the deaf to the cacophony of 'the front' during World War 1. In between are the hopes and dreams which define our humanity. There are scenes in Deafening which will never be forgotten. From the haunting effects of a childhood disease to the random horrors of war, the uncertainties that become our certainties have seldom been so well explored. A remarkable accomplishment."
"Review" by , "Deafening is a tribute to Frances Itani's storytelling skills, an affecting and evocative look at those who inhabited a soundless world during the early years of the last century. Grania, a deaf girl growing up in a small Ontario town, is a truly memorable character and the story of her love for her young soldier husband is brilliantly recounted."
"Synopsis" by , A tale of remarkable virtuosity and power. At the age of five, Grania — the daughter of hardworking hoteliers in small-town Ontario — emerges from a bout of scarlet fever profoundly deaf, and is suddenly sealed off from the world that was just beginning to open for her. Her mother cannot accept her daughter's deafness, so Grania's indefatigable grandmother tries to teach her language from the inside out. But when it becomes clear that Grania can no longer thrive in the world of the hearing, her family sends her to live at the Ontario School for the Deaf where she learns sign language and speech. After graduation Grania stays on to work at the school, and it is there that she meets Jim Lloyd, a hearing man. In wonderment the two begin to create a new emotional vocabulary that encompasses both sound and silence. But two weeks after their wedding, Jim must leave to serve as a stretcher-bearer on the blood-soaked battlefields of Flanders. During the war, Jim and Grania's letters — both real and imagined — attempt to sustain their intimacy, even while they are both pulled into cataclysmic events that will alter the world forever.
"Synopsis" by , War and deafness are the twin themes of this psychologically rich, impeccably crafted debut novel set during World War I. Itani's wonderfully felt tale is a timely reminder of war's cost, told from an unexpected perspective. Unabridged.
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