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Rain Village

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Young Tessa is a diminutive girl, far too small for farm work, and the object of ridicule by both her own family and the other children in their isolated Midwestern community. Her father seems to believe in nothing beyond his crops, certainly not education for his misfit daughter. When a mysterious, entrancing librarian comes to town, full of fabulous stories, earthy wisdom and potions for the lovelorn, she takes Tessa under her wing, teaching her to read and to believe in herself — and a whole new magical world of possibilities opens up. But even as she blooms, Tessa's father begins sexually abusing her. And her mentor carries a dark secret of her own that finally causes her to drown herself. Tessa runs off, following Mary's footsteps, to join the circus as a trapeze artist, where she marries a loving man and finds a fulfilling life for herself amidst her new circus family. But she remains haunted by her past. And when a stranger from one of Mary's fabulist tales shows up, Tessa risks everything to follow him to Rain Village, where she might finally discover her mentor's tragic secret.

A brilliantly evocative debut set in the early part of the 20th century, steeped in emotional turbulence and down-to-earth wisdom, where a young woman must reconcile the inner traumas from her past and learn to live in the present in order to avoid becoming prisoner to her future, Rain Village casts a fabulous spell, pulling us into a world of mystery and possibility where love, friendship and loyalty might either destroy or set one free.

Review:

"Tessa Riley, mocked by one and all for being 'about a third of the size of the usual kind,' resides uneasily in the early 20th-century farming community of Oakley, Kans., avoiding her rigid, abusive father; Bible-thumping mother; and aggressively normal siblings whenever she can. But Tessa, who narrates, finds comfort in Mary Finn, the newly arrived librarian to whom everyone has an attraction of one sort of another (leading, natch, to difficulty and resentment). Mary, known as Marionetta during her days as a flyer in the Velasquez Circus, teaches Tessa to read and tells her stories about a fantastical place called Rain Village; Tessa uses the stories, and Mary's attention, as an escape from ridicule and from her father's sexual abuse. Following Mary's enigmatic suicide, Tessa runs to Kansas City and waits for the circus to arrive, and ultimately becomes its star. She marries Mauro, one of the Flying Ramirez Brothers, but she continues to obsess over Mary and her stories. When Mary's nephew Costas arrives at the circus and announces that he is going to Rain Village, Tessa chooses to join him, unsure what she'll find there. Turgeon, in her debut, turns in a credible Francesca Lia Block-style fable, but the mystery of Mary's suicide and of Rain Village itself aren't enough to sustain interest in Tessa's quest. The conclusion is abrupt and leaves Tessa stranded." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Tessa Riley, mocked by one and all for being 'about a third of the size of the usual kind,' resides uneasily in the early 20th-century farming community of Oakley, Kans., avoiding her rigid, abusive father; Bible-thumping mother; and aggressively normal siblings whenever she can. But Tessa, who narrates, finds comfort in Mary Finn, the newly arrived librarian to whom everyone has an attraction of one sort of another (leading, natch, to difficulty and resentment). Mary, known as Marionetta during her days as a flyer in the Velasquez Circus, teaches Tessa to read and tells her stories about a fantastical place called Rain Village; Tessa uses the stories, and Mary's attention, as an escape from ridicule and from her father's sexual abuse. Following Mary's enigmatic suicide, Tessa runs to Kansas City and waits for the circus to arrive, and ultimately becomes its star. She marries Mauro, one of the Flying Ramirez Brothers, but she continues to obsess over Mary and her stories. When Mary's nephew Costas arrives at the circus and announces that he is going to Rain Village, Tessa chooses to join him, unsure what she'll find there. Turgeon, in her debut, turns in a credible Francesca Lia Block — style fable, but the mystery of Mary's suicide and of Rain Village itself aren't enough to sustain interest in Tessa's quest. The conclusion is abrupt and leaves Tessa stranded." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Turgeon's quirky first novel explores the power of secrets and how happiness is found in searching for truth." Booklist

Review:

"Turgeon is the ringmaster of an epic tale of beauty and oddity in the astonishing tradition of Middlesex and Memoirs of a Geisha. Circ-lit at its most enthralling." Jennifer Belle, author of Going Down and High Maintenance

Review:

"Delicate, evocative prose with nods to magical realism and strongly wrought characters." Library Journal

Synopsis:

In this hypnotic, magically real debut novel, a tiny young woman from the heart of the Midwest overcomes an abusive childhood by following her mysterious and beautiful mentor's footsteps to become a circus trapeze artist.

About the Author

Carolyn Turgeon studied English and Italian literature at Penn State and received a Master’s in Comparative Literature from UCLA. This is her first novel. She lives in New York.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

adeleye, December 1, 2006 (view all comments by adeleye)
A true tale of the good the bad and the ugly...

A good girl "physically disadvantaged" in a bad world of paternal abuse and vain materialism. A huge drop of good in the form of a mentor and confidant, wiped out too soon by the very ugly side of the good...

Sometimes life hands you a lemon, but you are strong, you learn to make lemonade, get rich and popular! What ever you do, dont let on that you were handed a lemon, it's still ugly.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(15 of 35 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9781932961249
Author:
Turgeon, Carolyn
Publisher:
Unbridled Books
Subject:
General
Subject:
Farm life
Subject:
Fathers and daughters
Subject:
Midwest
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literary
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20061131
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

Rain Village New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$23.95 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Unbridled Books - English 9781932961249 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Tessa Riley, mocked by one and all for being 'about a third of the size of the usual kind,' resides uneasily in the early 20th-century farming community of Oakley, Kans., avoiding her rigid, abusive father; Bible-thumping mother; and aggressively normal siblings whenever she can. But Tessa, who narrates, finds comfort in Mary Finn, the newly arrived librarian to whom everyone has an attraction of one sort of another (leading, natch, to difficulty and resentment). Mary, known as Marionetta during her days as a flyer in the Velasquez Circus, teaches Tessa to read and tells her stories about a fantastical place called Rain Village; Tessa uses the stories, and Mary's attention, as an escape from ridicule and from her father's sexual abuse. Following Mary's enigmatic suicide, Tessa runs to Kansas City and waits for the circus to arrive, and ultimately becomes its star. She marries Mauro, one of the Flying Ramirez Brothers, but she continues to obsess over Mary and her stories. When Mary's nephew Costas arrives at the circus and announces that he is going to Rain Village, Tessa chooses to join him, unsure what she'll find there. Turgeon, in her debut, turns in a credible Francesca Lia Block-style fable, but the mystery of Mary's suicide and of Rain Village itself aren't enough to sustain interest in Tessa's quest. The conclusion is abrupt and leaves Tessa stranded." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Tessa Riley, mocked by one and all for being 'about a third of the size of the usual kind,' resides uneasily in the early 20th-century farming community of Oakley, Kans., avoiding her rigid, abusive father; Bible-thumping mother; and aggressively normal siblings whenever she can. But Tessa, who narrates, finds comfort in Mary Finn, the newly arrived librarian to whom everyone has an attraction of one sort of another (leading, natch, to difficulty and resentment). Mary, known as Marionetta during her days as a flyer in the Velasquez Circus, teaches Tessa to read and tells her stories about a fantastical place called Rain Village; Tessa uses the stories, and Mary's attention, as an escape from ridicule and from her father's sexual abuse. Following Mary's enigmatic suicide, Tessa runs to Kansas City and waits for the circus to arrive, and ultimately becomes its star. She marries Mauro, one of the Flying Ramirez Brothers, but she continues to obsess over Mary and her stories. When Mary's nephew Costas arrives at the circus and announces that he is going to Rain Village, Tessa chooses to join him, unsure what she'll find there. Turgeon, in her debut, turns in a credible Francesca Lia Block — style fable, but the mystery of Mary's suicide and of Rain Village itself aren't enough to sustain interest in Tessa's quest. The conclusion is abrupt and leaves Tessa stranded." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "Turgeon's quirky first novel explores the power of secrets and how happiness is found in searching for truth."
"Review" by , "Turgeon is the ringmaster of an epic tale of beauty and oddity in the astonishing tradition of Middlesex and Memoirs of a Geisha. Circ-lit at its most enthralling."
"Review" by , "Delicate, evocative prose with nods to magical realism and strongly wrought characters."
"Synopsis" by , In this hypnotic, magically real debut novel, a tiny young woman from the heart of the Midwest overcomes an abusive childhood by following her mysterious and beautiful mentor's footsteps to become a circus trapeze artist.
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