Synopses & Reviews
Elliot Barrow is a man of ideals. The founder of Ponderosa Academy, a school for Native Americans, he is a paragon of virtue. But when he is critically injured in a horrific fire, his family, colleagues, and friends begin to unravel the devastating catastrophe at the heart of his life. Set Me Free is full of those who love Elliot: Amelia, his sixteen-year-old daughter, who has never imagined the violent, tragic truth behind the legacy of her dead mother; Helen, Elliot's first wife, visiting the academy to direct a production of The Tempest; and Cal, Elliot's closest friend and bitterest rival. Then there is the matter of Willa Llewelyn, hurtling across the country in a wheezing Volvo. She has never heard of Ponderosa Academy or Elliot Barrow. But she is vital to the great, beguiling mystery haunting Amelia, Helen, and Cal. In its frank depictions of friendship, fatherhood, race, class, love, and devastation, Set Me Free is moving, incisive, and above all, wise.
Headmaster Elliot Barrow has secrets. Because of a tragic incident at his progressive school for Native American children in Oregon, he lies in a coma. Only his friend and rival, Cal, can discover why Elliot is so determined to live: those burdensome secrets, which are tantalizingly personal, and reach into America's dark political past. All Elliot has ever told his devoted 16-year-old daughter about her childhood is that her mother is dead. But Amelia senses there's much more lurking in the shadows....
Elliot's first wife, Helen, has come to the school to direct Shakespeare's The Tempest. She brings with her myriad secrets about the shocking connections between them all. Meanwhile, on an ordinary Connecticut day, 17-year-old Willa overhears her mother sobbing. When Willa decides to discover why, she has no idea she'll travel over 3000 miles to Elliot Barrow's Oregon. She doesn't know that she and her family will be shattered by what the truth reveals....
A tragic accident at his progressive school for Native American children in Oregon that leaves headmaster Elliot Barrow in a coma reunites the friends and family members of the victim, as well as some previously unknown strangers, whose presence reveals shattering secrets from the past. By the author of The Effects of Light.
From the acclaimed author of The Effects of Light comes a compelling new novel of love, betrayal, and brotherhood.
About the Author
Miranda Beverly-Whittemore was born in 1976 to two academics and lived for a time in West Africa, where her parents conducted ethnographic research. After graduating from Vassar College, she worked for the 92nd Street Y's Unterberg Poetry Center. She has also been a figurative model for a number of internationally known photographers. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.