In the Oregon logging country of the 1930s, tomboy Maggie Morrison matures into a spirited young woman of 14, buys her first bra, discovers that a best friend can also be a boyfriend, and struggles with the leering advances of older men. The only constant in her life of endless new homes and new faces is her everemerging sense of herself. A ...
In the Oregon logging country of the 1930s, tomboy Maggie Morrison matures into a spirited young woman of 14, buys her first bra, discovers that a best friend can also be a boyfriend, and struggles with the leering advances of older men. The only constant in her life of endless new homes and new faces is her everemerging sense of herself. A Readers Circle Book.
Publishers Weekly, 2000-06-05 In her ambitious first novel, Poupeney skillfully weaves the dramatic impact of the Depression era and WWII on the lives of an Oregon family, but choppy pacing ultimately undermines the storytelling. The voice of Maggie, the middle of three children, is the novel's greatest strength, but three chapters from an omniscient viewpoint are jarringly and unnecessarily interjected. At times, the volume reads more like a gathering of sketches than a novel. For example, at one point the narrative skips from eight-year-old Maggie eavesdropping on the news that her father has been having an affair, to two chapters in the third person some undisclosed period of time later in a different town, then in the subsequent chapter returns to Maggie's narration at age 10; by the close of the novel, Maggie is 14. A lot of ground is covered in those six years, including her father's alcoholism and abuse, as well as Pearl Harbor and internment camps. The author introduces some fascinating characters here: the most subtly honed chapter in the novel chronicles the friendship between Maggie and Goofy John, a WWI veteran who dies attempting to bury a whale. But often an idea or character is introduced, then never developed. The relationships between Maggie and her mother, Maggie's brother Frank, and even Maggie's best friend Buddy are never fully fleshed out. The author constructs some compelling scenes and characterizes Maggie as a sympathetic heroine, but many readers may get lost trying to keep track of her through the novel's disjointed structure. Ages 14-up. (June) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
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