Lucy's Book Mark

Miss Jane

Miss Jane by Brad Watson
"Miss Jane is Brad Watson’s second novel, following National Book Award finalist The Heaven of Mercury. Watson uses his great aunt’s life as an inspiration for this work. Miss Jane is the story of Jane Chisholm, an intelligent, independent woman born with persistent cloaca, a urogenital sinus anomaly. She was born later in her parents’ lives and as such they blamed themselves for her condition, a guilt that she could feel even if it was unspoken. The family doctor never gave up hope that one day the advances in medicine would be able to provide a reconstructive surgery that would give her a more normal life. Set in rural Mississippi during the early part of the first decades of the 20th century, Miss Jane is a vivid portrait of the hardships and challenges that Jane Chisholm faced as a woman with a disability trying to fit in to society and also a woman not afraid to stand alone as an individual."  From Ingram Library Services

Everyone Brave is Forgiven

Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave
Everyone Brave Is Forgiven is a masterpiece depicting the many varied aspects of British experience during WWII. Following the lives of Mary and Tom on the home front as they navigate harsh societal expectations and the daily grind of the blitz, as well as their friend Alistair, a soldier fighting for his own survival on the island of Malta, Chris Cleave's new novel paints a vivid portrait of the human experience of war. Although set nearly 80 years in the past, Cleave's story could as easily take place in present day. His characters examine the complicated issues surrounding racism, drug addiction, national pride, war, and women's rights. General readers and fans of the genre will enjoy the way Cleave's narrative style deftly handles a delicate balancing act--at once he manages to keep the tone light while relating the horrors of circumstance, leading readers on a lovely, heartbreaking journey to a satisfying conclusion.  From Ingram Library Services.

The Cherry Harvest

The Cherry Harvest by Lucy Sanna

 

The setting for this book by Lucy Sanna is a Door County cherry orchard, but the focus here is on how people deal with challenges.  Tom gave up his University studies, including his new-found love of literature, to run his family’s orchard.  Charlotte, his wife, gave up life on a dairy farm, and still misses the contact with the animals.  Both they and daughter Kate miss son Ben, fighting in Italy in World War II.  The arrival of 20 German prisoners of war to help with pruning and later picking the cherries adds unbearable stresses to their lives.  

Brilliant Beacons

Brilliant Beacons by Eric Jay DolinEric Jay Dolin, bestsellng author of "Leviathan," has written this history of American lighthouses, "Brilliant Beacons: a history of the American lighthouse."  The author starts you at the evolution of the lighthouse system and takes you through the many political, military, and technological battles to build and keep these beacons.  The first lighthouse was the Boston Light and many communities after that fought for their own to help the many mariners sailing their coasts.  Readers learn how each of the wars had an impact on the lighthouses and also certain individuals such as Stephen Pleasonton who's management of America's lighthouse left them with inferior lamps and no upkeep.  No book on lighthouses is complete without the stories of the many lighthouse keepers, many who were isolated from others but put their lives on the line.  The keeper's job was usually passed down to either a wife or child when their life was taken.  In the early days, the keepers were also low paid and didn't have a pension.  In the early 1900's, George R. Putnam became the first commissioner of lighthouses and his tenure brought electrification which led to increased automation in addition to pensions and disability benefits for the keepers.  The end of the book contains lists of lighthouse organizations and museums.  Interesting historical read.
 

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