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Ella in Bloom

Hearon, Shelby

131 valoraciones por Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0375410384 / ISBN 13: 9780375410383
Editorial: Alfred a Knopf. New York., 2001
Condición: Fine Encuadernación de tapa dura
Librería: Limestone Books (Austin, TX, Estados Unidos de America)

Librería en AbeBooks desde: 22 de diciembre de 1998

Cantidad: 1

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NF/NF. Briefly inscribed by author on fep. First edition, first printing. 259 pp. N° de ref. de la librería 14440

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Detalles bibliográficos

Título: Ella in Bloom

Editorial: Alfred a Knopf. New York.

Año de publicación: 2001

Encuadernación: Hardcover

Condición del libro:Fine

Condición de la sobrecubierta: Fine

Ejemplar firmado: Inscribed by Author(s)

Edición: 1st Edition

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Shelby Hearon has been widely praised for the insight, wit, and subtlety with which her novels limn the complexities of marriage and family ("What Jane Austen is to courtship, Shelby Hearon is to marriage" --New York Newsday), and the ways in which place can profoundly affect us all. Now, with Ella in Bloom, Hearon gives us her sharpest, funniest, most telling novel yet.

It is the story of Ella, who has always lived in the shadow of her "perfect" older sister. A gutsy single parent eking out a living for herself and her intrepid teenage daughter Birdie, Ella invents a genteel life, writing to her mother in drought-baked Texas about her heirloom roses, her linen dresses, and other amenities of a respectable life in Old Metairie, Louisiana. Little does her mother know about the run-down, scruffy house Ella really lives in, or that she makes ends meet by watering rich people's houseplants when they flee the coastal summer heat.

But when Ella's beautiful sister Terrell, on the way to meet her lover, is suddenly killed in a chartered plane crash, old family patterns are shattered. And Ella, confronting the reality of her life (and of the man she had relegated to the past) comes, finally and fully, into bloom.

Wise, wicked, and moving, in Shelby Hearon's hands this portrait of a woman--a woman we all know--is guaranteed to give extraordinary pleasure.


Ella is a perfect Shelby Hearon heroine: sympathetic, harried, vaguely overwhelmed by life. She and her teenage daughter, Birdie, live in Old Metairie, Louisiana, where they struggle to get by on what Ella makes as a plant sitter. Still, the two muddle along cheerfully enough, with mom casually dating a slick real-estate agent and daughter enjoying her budding talent as a cellist. But when her beauty-queen older sister, Terrell, dies, Ella is drawn back into the orbit of her proper Texas family. Long ago she fled her demanding mother and professor father; now, as the surviving, not-quite-good-enough daughter, she finds herself criticized more harshly than ever. The story follows our heroine as she finds love and self-acceptance, which appear hand in hand.

Hearon's books--including Life Estates and Owning Jolene--are odd creations. They jog along at an easy, graceless gait, somehow engendering a powerful sense of good will in the reader as they go. Maybe they succeed because the author is so handy at marrying style and subject. Her characters are haphazard, catch-as-catch-can types, and so is her writing. Sometimes this ease works nicely. Hearon sidles up to emotional nuances and captures them offhandedly, as when Ella remembers fielding a lover's declaration. "I had said, 'Not now,' gazing, like an idiot, at my watch. 'It's too soon or too late or something.'" Elsewhere, however, Hearon lets things get so loosey-goosey that you're not quite sure where she's going. Ella observes one of her clients: "She smiled, a very blond, made-up woman with a lot of energy and general good feeling, who might, in another life, have made a first-class waiter at the Pink Café." Said caf&eacut;e is the fanciest place in Old Metairie, and Hearon has set a scene there, but we're still not exactly sure what she's trying to get across about the character. Still, such loose ends are a small price to pay for a charming, not-too-light read. --Claire Dederer

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