Lead title With the death of a mother and the abduction of a young girl, Susan Fletcher has written a vividly beautiful novel about the innocence and terror of childhood. A captivating debut novel about the innocence and terror of childhood Shortlisted for the 2004 Whitbread First Novel Award. Will appeal to fans of Alice Sebold, Kate Atkinson and Esther Freud Susan Fletcher is a recent graduate from the prestigious UEA Creative Writing Course Includes a fascinating PS section with exclusive new material placing the book in its historical and aesthetic context Competition: Alice Sebold, Kate Atkinson, Esther Freud
Susan Fletcher was born in 1979 in Birmingham. She recently graduated from the UEA Creative Writing Course. Eve Green is her first novel.
A pregnant young woman reflects on her childhood in a tight-knit Wales community in Fletcher's debut, a novel rich-sometimes too rich-in melancholic, misty atmosphere and poetic poignancy. When Eve's mother dies unexpectedly, the seven-year-old is sent to live with her loving, hard-working grandparents. She devours stories about distant relatives, but is forbidden to ask about her father, an Irish thief who deserted her mother; her only knowledge of him comes from her mother's heartfelt diaries ("In the rain K's hair looks like feathers"). Fletcher is a gifted writer-her turn on loss ("[it] billowed out before me, snapping at itself and pulling me with it, streaming out over the sheep hills like a funeral flag...") is especially lovely-but the novel often feels overwrought. When a local girl, Rosie, disappears, Eve is dragged into the town's snarled relations in familiar ways, with familiar characters. (Fletcher's debt to Harper Lee includes Billy Macklin, a deformed man ostracized after a head injury that supposedly made him insane, and who is revealed to be gentle and kind.) The dreamy emotionality of the prose takes away from the book's more subtle and singular scenes, such as the awkward, bewitching meeting of Eve and Rosie, child rivals for an older man's love. Such moments-stark, troubling and unresolved-are too rare in a novel about devotion and guilt. Agent, Vivienne Schuster. (Sept.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
'This is my kind of heroine -- that good mixture of romance and spirit, courage and self-doubt -- steered through a gripping rite of passage towards a disturbing -- but ultimately wholly satisfying -- conclusion. I couldn't put it down. Susan Fletcher is a clever, assured writer who can write truthfully about love in its many guises' Mavis Cheek 'A most impressive debut. The writing is lyrical, the characters are vivid and alive and the story makes you want to really turn the pages. In red-haired, mother-less Eve Green, Susan Fletcher gives you a heroine you won't forget.' Marika Cobbold
Adult/High School-Eve Green never knew her father and, as a child, faced the horror of her mother's suicide. Now 29, she looks back at her first year of bereavement. She was eight, in their flat in Birmingham, when her mother climbed into a warm bath and took too many pills. The child's grandparents provided a loving home on their farm in a remote Welsh valley, but some villagers who knew her Irish father saw her as a troublemaker like him. Daniel, their farmhand, became a close friend along with Billy, a recluse with a badly burned face. She rebelled against her grandparents' rules, but knew that they loved her and finally reciprocated. Seeking revenge against a villager who constantly denigrated her, Eve tried to implicate him in the abduction of a schoolmate and was humiliated when her lie was exposed. Eventually, she learned her father's identity, and she and Daniel now await the birth of their baby. Though the flashbacks are occasionally confusing, any teen who has lost a parent can identify with the protagonist's feelings of grief, abandonment, fear, anger, and rebellion.-Molly Connally, Chantilly Regional Library, VA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.