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Ruby

by

Ruby Cover

ISBN13: 9780804139090
ISBN10: 0804139091
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

Only 3 left in stock at $17.50!

 

Staff Pick

Ephram Jennings spends a lifetime in love with Ruby Bell. He is a good man with good intentions, but is she too broken to reach? A harrowing tale set in rural Texas in the '50s, Ruby is a story — and a woman — you will not be able to forget. Years and years and even generations of pain can bury a person too deep for redemption, yet Ephram can only love Ruby because that is all he knows how to do. Dark, horrific, and disturbing, Ruby is one amazing book that will crawl beneath your skin and infect you with its characters — which, surprisingly, is not at all a bad thing. This one will be on my Top Five list this year.
Recommended by Dianah, Powells.com

Bond weaves a web of madness and ghosts in this scary and very disturbing read. I feel like the book needs a warning label: explicit and devastating scenes! Yet the story and Bond's writing are so astonishingly volcanic. One of the best books I have read this year.
Recommended by Adrienne, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The epic, unforgettable story of a man determined to protect the woman he loves from the town desperate to destroy her—this beautiful and devastating debut heralds the arrival of a major new voice in fiction.

 

Ephram Jennings has never forgotten the beautiful girl with the long braids running through the piney woods of Liberty, their small East Texas town. Young Ruby, “the kind of pretty it hurt to look at,” has suffered beyond imagining, so as soon as she can, she flees suffocating Liberty for the bright pull of 1950s New York. Ruby quickly winds her way into the ripe center of the city--the darkened piano bars and hidden alleyways of the Village--all the while hoping for a glimpse of the red hair and green eyes of her mother. When a telegram from her cousin forces her to return home, thirty-year-old Ruby Bell finds herself reliving the devastating violence of her girlhood. With the terrifying realization that she might not be strong enough to fight her way back out again, Ruby struggles to survive her memories of the town’s dark past. Meanwhile, Ephram must choose between loyalty to the sister who raised him and the chance for a life with the woman he has loved since he was a boy.

Full of life, exquisitely written, and suffused with the pastoral beauty of the rural South, Ruby is a transcendent novel of passion and courage. This wondrous page-turner rushes through the red dust and gossip of Main Street, to the pit fire where men swill bootleg outside Bloom’s Juke, to Celia Jennings’s kitchen where a cake is being made, yolk by yolk, that Ephram will use to try to begin again with Ruby. Utterly transfixing, with unforgettable characters, riveting suspense, and breathtaking, luminous prose, Ruby offers an unflinching portrait of man’s dark acts and the promise of the redemptive power of love.

Review:

"Bond's debut novel is difficult to read for its graphic and uncomfortable portrayal of racism, sexual violence, and religious intolerance in East Texas in the 1960s and '70s. Bond is a gifted storyteller, able to make the reader squirm with anger and unease as she vividly depicts how easily bad things happen to good people. Ruby Bell is a middle-aged black woman living a feral existence in the woods of Liberty Township, a poor black community where the intolerant and superstitious inhabitants treat her with disgust as a social outcast and an unrepentant sinner because she's a prostitute. Ephram Jennings grew up with Ruby and has been in love with her for years, despite her reputation. He too is shunned and ridiculed — because of his feelings for her. Their romance remains sad and painfully one-sided, regardless of Ephram's tender good intentions. Even his doting older sister, Celia, is embarrassed and ashamed by Ephram's behavior, and her deep, visceral hatred of Ruby goes back decades. Flashbacks reveal why Ruby chose a life of prostitution and why Celia hates her, as well as why Ephram struggles to get out from under his sister's influence. All of the family drama is set amid an ingrained culture of sexual exploitation of women and children, racial brutality, and the community's passive acceptance that these things are facts of life. This is a grim tale, well told, but there's no comfort in these pages — just tragedy and heartache." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

CYNTHIA BOND has taught writing to homeless and at-risk youth throughout Los Angeles for more than fifteen years. She attended Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, then moved to New York and attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. A PEN/Rosenthal Fellow, Bond founded the Blackbird Writing Collective in 2011. At present, Bond teaches therapeutic writing at Paradigm Malibu Adolescent Treatment Center. A native of East Texas, she lives in Los Angeles with her daughter.

About the Author

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What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

writermala, July 9, 2014 (view all comments by writermala)
I couldn't get into this book for quite a while and even toyed with the idea of giving it up; but in the end i was glad I persevered. It was certainly different and heartrending. The characters are well drawn and the plot is well conceived.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Product Details

ISBN:
9780804139090
Author:
Bond, Cynthia
Publisher:
Hogarth
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
fiction;new york;texas
Publication Date:
20140431
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
9.56 x 6.68 x 1.14 in 1.44 lb

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » African American » Historical

Ruby Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$17.50 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Hogarth - English 9780804139090 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Ephram Jennings spends a lifetime in love with Ruby Bell. He is a good man with good intentions, but is she too broken to reach? A harrowing tale set in rural Texas in the '50s, Ruby is a story — and a woman — you will not be able to forget. Years and years and even generations of pain can bury a person too deep for redemption, yet Ephram can only love Ruby because that is all he knows how to do. Dark, horrific, and disturbing, Ruby is one amazing book that will crawl beneath your skin and infect you with its characters — which, surprisingly, is not at all a bad thing. This one will be on my Top Five list this year.

"Staff Pick" by ,

Bond weaves a web of madness and ghosts in this scary and very disturbing read. I feel like the book needs a warning label: explicit and devastating scenes! Yet the story and Bond's writing are so astonishingly volcanic. One of the best books I have read this year.

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Bond's debut novel is difficult to read for its graphic and uncomfortable portrayal of racism, sexual violence, and religious intolerance in East Texas in the 1960s and '70s. Bond is a gifted storyteller, able to make the reader squirm with anger and unease as she vividly depicts how easily bad things happen to good people. Ruby Bell is a middle-aged black woman living a feral existence in the woods of Liberty Township, a poor black community where the intolerant and superstitious inhabitants treat her with disgust as a social outcast and an unrepentant sinner because she's a prostitute. Ephram Jennings grew up with Ruby and has been in love with her for years, despite her reputation. He too is shunned and ridiculed — because of his feelings for her. Their romance remains sad and painfully one-sided, regardless of Ephram's tender good intentions. Even his doting older sister, Celia, is embarrassed and ashamed by Ephram's behavior, and her deep, visceral hatred of Ruby goes back decades. Flashbacks reveal why Ruby chose a life of prostitution and why Celia hates her, as well as why Ephram struggles to get out from under his sister's influence. All of the family drama is set amid an ingrained culture of sexual exploitation of women and children, racial brutality, and the community's passive acceptance that these things are facts of life. This is a grim tale, well told, but there's no comfort in these pages — just tragedy and heartache." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , CYNTHIA BOND has taught writing to homeless and at-risk youth throughout Los Angeles for more than fifteen years. She attended Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, then moved to New York and attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. A PEN/Rosenthal Fellow, Bond founded the Blackbird Writing Collective in 2011. At present, Bond teaches therapeutic writing at Paradigm Malibu Adolescent Treatment Center. A native of East Texas, she lives in Los Angeles with her daughter.
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