The Underground Railroad (Pulitzer Prize Winner) (National Book Award Winner) (Oprah's Book Club): A Novel | The Sympathizer | The Sympathizer | Lily and the Octopus | The Tumbling Turner Sisters | Crown of Dust | Star Wars: Jedi Academy | Crown of Dust
âKaren Joy Fowler, author ofÂ We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
Reliance, Illinois tells the story of a young woman faced with choices that will alter the course of her own future, and offers a brilliant window into American life during a period of tumultuous change.Â Illinois, 1874: With a birthmark covering half her face, thirteen-year-old Madelyn Branch is accustomed to cold and awkward greetings, and expects no less in the struggling town of Reliance. After all, her mother, Rebecca, was careful not to mention a daughter in the Matrimonial Times ad that brought them there. When Rebecca weds, Madelyn poses as her motherâs younger sister and earns a grudging berth in her new house. Deeply injured by her motherâs deceptions, Madelyn soon leaves to enter the service of Miss Rose Werner, prodigal daughter of the townâs founder. Miss Rose is a suffragette and purveyor of black market birth control who sees in Madelyn a project and potential acolyte. Madelyn, though, wants to feel beautiful and loved, and she pins her hopes on William Stark, a young photographer and haunted Civil War veteran.
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