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Lily and Mabel find themselves on their own, living in their grandmother's antique shop in rural Nebraska. They're bound together by their loyalty to each other and by a haunting urgency to reconcile their own, disparate versions of the past so that they might build their futures together. In what she intends to be a rebellious, even wild, choice, Lily steals a car with her boyfriend and heads southwest--imitating the flight of the infamous Stark brothers but without the violent crime spree--toward an Arizona vineyard to confront her mother. But Mabel stays behind, seeking to commune somehow with her father's ghost and finding solace from a young man whose family is grieving the death of a sister. Renowned author Timothey Schaffert's celebrated debut novel, reissued here in an entirely new paperback edition, chronicles two sisters on the cusp of womanhood as they struggle to understand their father's suicide as well as their mother's abandonment of them many years earlier. On graduating from high school, the sisters are once again set adrift, this time by their grandmother, who leaves them for Florida. In order to survive, and perhaps ven thrive, on their path to adulthood, they must learn to reconcile their pasts and discover how to depend upon themselves as well as upon each other.
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"Schaffert captures the sisters' genuine need to make sense of abandonment...He creates a colorful, not unduly precious world in which everything seems to mirror the sisters' idiosyncrasies." "Sad, often funny, and extraordinarily seductive. This book is quite an achievement." "Rich and dusty with wisdom, with many of the same delicate surprises you'd find in the Nebraska antiques store his characters have grown up in." "The plight of the Rollow sisters begins like a fairy tale...but rather than waiting to be rescued, these girls are up to the task of slaying dragons from their weird childhood on their own...The descriptive gifts of the author are great. I want to know what becomes of these brave and funny sisters." boondocks-Gothicquietly tragicThe sisters lose their childhood innocence only to acquire an adult version As long as the sisters have each other, nothing else matters. The Washington Post blithe, quirkyspirited, offbeat Like his characters, Mr. Schaffert grew up on a farm in Nebraska and seems to have cultivated a sense of exquisite boredom mixed with wry humor he displays an outlook well suited to the paradoxical. Janet Maslin, The New York Times Timothy Schaffert is a delightful and startling new voice [The Phantom Limbs of the Rollow Sisters] avoids even a hint of pathos while sometimes being sad, often funny, and extraordinarily seductive. This book is quite an achievement. Robb Forman Dew (winner of the National Book Award) ..".blithe, quirky...spirited, offbeat... Like his characters, Mr. Schaffert grew up on a farm in Nebraska and seems to have cultivated a sense of exquisite boredom mixed with wry humor ... he displays an outlook well suited to the paradoxical." - Janet Maslin, The New York Times ..".boondocks-Gothic...quietly tragic...The sisters lose their childhood innocence only to acquire an adult version... As long as the sisters have each other, nothing else matters." - The Washington Post "One has to admire an author who sets his first novel in rural Nebraska. That landscape was put on the literary map a century ago by Willa Cather ... in The Phantom Limbs of the Rollow Sisters by Timothy Schaffert, a narrative both sweet and audacious unfolds, encroaching Cather's pinnacle just a bit. ... I wanted to know what becomes of these brave and funny sisters. The descriptive gifts of the author are great." - United Press International "Timothy Schaffert is a delightful and startling new voice ... [The Phantom Limbs of the Rollow Sisters] avoids even a hint of pathos while sometimes being sad, often funny, and extraordinarily seductive. This book is quite an achievement." - Robb Forman Dew "Perceptive and intelligent." - The Midwest Book Review "An inventive story and endearing characters." - Booklist "A worthy first novel ... The characters are flawed but believable, vulnerable but resilient." - The Post & Courier "Timothy Schaffert writes of connections made, connections broken, connections longed for. His writing is gritty and down to earth, and yet, he writes poetic images of powerful and painful beauty that transcend any earth-bound tether. Two sisters, powerfully joined even when far apart, move through seemingly unfathomable events, trying to make sense of their world, as it was, is, and will be. Schaffert is an estimable guide through their haunted existence." - Glenn Raucher, Literary Arts Coordinator, The Writer's Voice New York

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