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Easter Islandby Jennifer Vanderbes
Synopses & Reviews
It is 1913. Elsa Pendleton travels from England to Easter Island with her husband, an anthropologist sent by the Royal Geographical Society to study the colossal moai statues, and her younger sister. What begins as familial duty for Elsa becomes a grand adventure; on Easter Island she discovers her true calling. But out of contact with the outside world, she is unaware that World War I has been declared and that a German naval squadron, fleeing the British across the South Pacific, is heading toward the island she now considers home. Sixty years later, Dr. Greer Farraday, an American botanist, travels to Easter Island to research the island's ancient pollen, but more importantly, to put back the pieces of her life after the death of her husband. A series of brilliant revelations brings to life the parallel quests of these two intrepid young women as they delve into the centuries-old mysteries of Easter Island. Slowly unearthing the island's haunting past, they are forced to confront turbulent discoveries about themselves and the people they love, changing their lives forever. Easter Island is a tour de force of storytelling that will establish Jennifer Vanderbes as one of the most gifted writers of her generation. Foreign rights to Easter Island have been sold in 14 countries, including England, Spain, and France.
"The tight weaving of the two stories can feel a bit suffocating. But it is to Vanderbes's credit that it never seems formulaic....This is a readable, entertaining work." Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal
"Recalling A. S. Byatt's Possession... weaves together history, science and romance, while maintaining and undercurrent of suspense." Time Out (New York)
"One of the best novels of the year... fully imagined and wonderfully written." Robert Stone
"Splendid... captures in the intertwined stores of two women a passion for life and for science that transcends time." Andrea Barrett, author of Servants of the Map
"Intelligently conceived and elegantly written... gripping storytelling." Newsday
"A beautiful story... a journey of mystery and surprise that readers will want to take again and again." Fort Worth Star-Telegram
"Vanderbes knows how to craft suspense, and the narratives-while packed with vivid historical and scientific detail-move forward on the strength of her fully realized characters. When the connection between Elsa and Greer is revealed, it illuminates the novel." Publishers Weekly
In this extraordinary fiction debut--rich with love and betrayal, history and intellectual passion--two remarkable narratives converge on Easter Island, one of the most remote places in the world.
About the Author
Jennifer Vanderbes is a graduate of Yale University and the Iowa Writers Workshop. She was a McCreight Fellow in Fiction at the University of Wisconsin, and most recently was the Fellow in Creative Writing at Colgate University.
From the Hardcover edition.
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