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At The Breakers (Hardback)

A Novel

Historical Fiction

Imprint: University Press of Kentucky
Series: Kentucky Voices
Pages: 352
ISBN: 9780813125428
Published: 6th March 2009
Casemate UK Academic

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Literary fiction has presented readers with centuries of memorable women in trouble. Here, the author of the widely praised and beloved Come and Go, Molly Snow, Kentucky novelist Mary Ann Taylor-Hall, offers Jo Sinclair, a long-term single parent of four children. Fleeing an abusive relationship, she winds up in Sea Cove, New Jersey, in front of The Breakers, a salty old hotel in the process of renovation. In this unlikely setting, Jo finds a way to renovate herself, to reclaim the promising life that was derailed by pregnancy when she was fourteen. She impulsively convinces the owner to give her a job painting the rooms and settles in with her youngest child, thirteen-year-old Nick. A grand cast of characters wanders through this little world, among them Iris Zephyr, the hotel's ninety-two-year-old permanent boarder; Charlie, a noble mixed breed dog; Wendy, Jo's tough eighteen-year-old daughter, who has suffered most from her mother's past mistakes; Marco, the nearby gas station owner, who bids fair to become her mother's next mistake. Soon Victor Mangold, Jo's former teacher, a well-known and exuberant poet, arrives on the premises to stir everything up, including Jo's yearning for a life of art and committed love. At The Breakers is a deeply felt and beautifully written novel about forgiveness and reconciliation. Its heroine, put through the fire, comes out with a chance for happiness, if she can muster the faith, courage, and optimism to take that chance.

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