A “beautifully written” Pulitzer Prize–winning novel about prejudice and a distinguished family’s secrets in the American South (The Atlantic Monthly). Seven generations of the Howland family have lived in the Alabama plantation home built by an ancestor who fought for Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812. Over the course of a century, the Howlands accumulated a fortune, fought for secession, and helped rebuild the South, establishing themselves as one of the most respected families in the state. But that history means little to Abigail Howland. The inheritor of the Howland manse, Abigail hides the long-buried secret of her grandfather’s thirty-year relationship with his African American mistress. Her fortunes reverse when her family’s mixed-race heritage comes to light and her community—locked in the prejudices of the 1960s—turns its back on her. Faced with such deep-seated racism, Abigail is pushed to defend her family at all costs. A “novel of real magnitude,” The Keepers of the House is an unforgettable story of family, tradition, and racial injustice set against the richly drawn backdrop of the American South (Kirkus Reviews). This ebook features an illustrated biography of Shirley Ann Grau, including rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s personal collection.
Since the eighteenth century the eccentric and flamboyant Beltran family have ruled their desolate Andean valley. Now they are almost extinct. At seventeen, Lydia Sinclair, newly married to Don Diego Beltran, the last of the line, arrives at the vast decaying Hacienda La Bebella. As her husband retreats into himself, Lydia takes refuge in unearthing his ancestors' tragic history. Benito, the family's oldest retainer, relates to her tales of splendour and romance, violence and suffering. From these she weaves a rich gothic tapestry in which the fantastic legends of the past are mingled with the present necessity for survival in a harsh, drought-ridden land.
Months before her fifteenth birthday, Nyssa learns that she is a special member of a legendary clan, the Keepers of Knowledge, as she and her uncle try to escape from Alaric, the White Wolf, who wants to use lines tattooed on her to destroy the rest of her people.
When lighthouse keeper Hannes Harker is posted to a remote island with his young wife, he discovers something long-hidden in the tower that causes him to lose his footing and fall. Seriously injured, Hannes is evacuated to hospital and nursed back to health by Sister Rika, to whom he haltingly tells the story of his life: of his mother's mysterious death, of his wild young wife, Aletta, and of the desolate island inhabited only by the lighthouse keepers and guano workers - two communities confined together, yet rigidly separated in one of the bleakest places on earth. With the arrival of a figure from Aletta's past, her own secrets erupt into the present, just as the simmering tensions and injustices endured for so long by the guano workers erupt into a single, shocking act of violence. Written in the exquisite, haunting prose for which Marguerite Poland is renowned, The Keeper is the story of two generations of lighthouse keepers - men obsessed by their duty to the light - and the wives who accompany them into a life of frightening isolation. The Keeper is a novel about the power of secrets, the power of love, and the power of stories.
This magnificent summation of the short stories of Shirley Ann Grau, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for her novel The Keepers of the House, gathers together eighteen gems ranking with the finest of Eudora Welty and Flannery O'Connor. Grau possesses a range representing a master course in the craft of this most demanding art form. Her reader's banquet offers character sketches of Chekovian poignance and insight, a hilarious love story, excursions into the gothic and hauntingly apocalyptic, the elegiac and experimental, and stories that feel like compressed novels in their lapidary polish, depth, and emotional weight. Grau belongs in the company of the great southern short story writers, and the author's own choices of her best work remind readers of the unmatched capacity of the brief fictional form to depict character epiphany and such timeless themes as redemption and rebirth, the struggle between power and love, and the persistence of the past.
A “luminescent” collection of stories about nine Southern women from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Keepers of the House (The New York Times). The nine namesake women of this collection come from widely disparate worlds, from isolated bayou towns to New Orleans high society. All, however, struggle with grief, longing, and hope. In “Widows Walk,” Myra Rowland tries to make sense of life after the death of her husband. “In the Beginning” depicts a daughter trying to understand her own mother’s determination to raise her up from abject poverty. “Ending,” meanwhile, tells of a couple whose union dissolves just as their daughter marries. In many cases, these protagonists are struggling to accept the sudden loss of life and love in a land teeming with both. In this unforgettable volume, one of America’s most masterful storytellers writes with an eye for the female experience and the teeming diversity of life in the Deep South. “Grau’s tremendous powers of description, ability to conjure atmosphere, and impeccable prose elevate her to the top tier of American short story stylists” (Booklist). This ebook features an illustrated biography of Shirley Ann Grau, including rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s personal collection.
A provocative novel of a New Orleans woman’s heartbreaking decision, by the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Keepers of the House. Joan Mitchell has two suitors, and can’t decide whom to marry. A witness to her mother Aurelie’s less than successful romantic history, she’d like to skip marriage altogether. Joan and Aurelie live together in a beautiful French Quarter home on Coliseum Street in New Orleans, along with Joan’s many half-sisters born of Aurelie’s five disastrous marriages. Joan lives a mostly carefree life, but when she becomes pregnant, she chooses to end her pregnancy rather than marry a man she doesn’t love—a decision with grave consequences in conservative 1950s New Orleans. The second novel by a National Book Award finalist and one of the most acclaimed voices of the American South, The House on Coliseum Street is a brave, heartbreaking love letter to New Orleans and “a sad, wistful, young, timeless story, graced by [Shirley Ann Grau’s] fine drawn perceptions . . . and by the still, soft enchantment of her prose” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review). This ebook features an illustrated biography of Shirley Ann Grau, including rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s personal collection.
Illuminating African narratives for readers both inside and outside the continent. Representing the very best of African creative nonfiction, Safe House brings together works from Africa's contemporary literary greats. In a collection that ranges from travel writing and memoir to reportage and meditative essays, editor Ellah Wakatama Allfrey has brought together some of the most talented writers of creative nonfiction from across Africa. This creative nonfiction single by Elnathan John is from Safe House anthology and documents Elnathan John’s visits to a community facing social exile in northern Nigeria.
“An arresting and beautifully written novel” about a young woman who yearns to escape her life in Louisiana, by a Pulitzer Prize–winning author (The New York Times). West of New Orleans among a few small Gulf islands lies the Isle aux Chiens, a tiny, impoverished strip of land burdened by intolerable heat and roaming packs of wild dogs. Here a handful of Creole families eke out a meager existence by fishing the Gulf waters. Such is the fate of Al Landry and his seventeen-year-old daughter, Annie. All Annie has ever known is the wild sea, but she longs for other people and places, including the glamor of life in the Big Easy. When a cruel, handsome sailing boat pilot from the city passes through, he kindles Annie’s fantasies for a life beyond the island. Soon, the young girl faces a decision: remain planted in the predictable life she has always known, or toss it all aside for her dreamed-of adventure. Elsewhere on the island, eighteen-year-old Henry Livaudais disappears on a hunting expedition, sparking a feud with a neighboring settlement of Yugoslavian oystermen. As the summer heat intensifies, his father tries to discover why Henry left the isolated fishing settlement. By the author of The Keepers of the House, this novel follows two teenagers on the cusp of adulthood as they look for an escape from their Southern homes. The National Book Award–shortlisted author establishes herself as the master chronicler of bayou life in this debut novel that captures the complexities of the Deep South’s most impoverished corners. This ebook features an illustrated biography of Shirley Ann Grau, including rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s personal collection.
An epic time-slip fantasy novel for young adults that leads to a dramatic turn of events when the modern day begins to seep into the 17th century. After the death of his dad, Martin and his mum move into an enormous stately home where they encounter a mysterious being called the Keeper of Portals, who claims to control every portal on the planet, except for the door at the end of Martin's bedroom, which has been sealed for 400 years. One morning, Martin wakes to discover the Keeper of Portals is missing and the door at the end of his bedroom has been opened. Martin steps through the door to find himself in the 17th century where he meets Isabel, the house's maid. Martin and Isabel quickly learn that everything on earth, from time and causality, to pleasantries and buttons, is controlled by its own keeper. After discovering two imprisoned keepers, Martin and Isabel receive the ability to jump between doorways and change their time, but they soon become entangled in a battle against the master of the house, the Keeper of Questions. The Keeper of Portals follows Martin and Isabel as they alternate between the present day and the 17th century, often returning to a time they have already been to and nearly running into past versions of themselves. They fight hordes of murderous villagers, escape from the Keeper of Questions by hiding in a sea cave for 400 years and confront the powerful Keeper of Causality. But there is something wrong with time itself as items from the present day begin to bleed into Isabel's time. After driving an off-road 4x4 through the peaceful countryside of the 17th century, Martin and Isabel confront the Keeper of Questions in the city of London. But when they arrive they find it deserted - the Keeper of Questions has control of everyone in London and it won't be long until Martin and Isabel are next. The Keeper of Portals is a adventure story that explores the supernatural and is an ideal read for young adults. Inspired by authors such as Philip Pullman and Neil Gaiman, this book will be enjoyed by fans of time-slip fantasies, both children and adults alike.
A boy, a girl, an ancient puzzle, and a House of Answers, Artefacts, Miseries and Mysteries. From the moment Horace F. Andrews sees the sign from the bus - literally a sign with his name on it - everything in his normal little life changes. An encounter with the House of Answers, a magically hidden warehouse full of mysterious objects and even stranger people, only leads to more questions. These people think he's special - a Keeper of an incredible gift - although scientifically-minded Horace isn't so sure he really believes in that kind of thing. But then a confrontation with an impossibly tall, thin, creepy and undoubtedly menacing man makes him think twice... Horace must now quickly begin to unravel the mysteries of this hidden world and his new gift, as he finds himself immersed in a battle between ancient forces, where the bad guys don't pull any punches, even the good guys have their flaws, and where friendship, loyalty and trust turn out to be the greatest powers of all.