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Stevens County Library Blog

Book Sale – August 2014
Visit our Annual Book Sale during the month of August! Click here for a price list!  

CLOSED Wednesday, August 20, 2014
We will be CLOSED Wednesday, August 20 for staff computer training.

Newsletter 8/14/14

Booklist Review of the Day

Nora Webster.

Toibin, Colm (author).
Oct. 2014. 384p. Scribner, hardcover, $27 (9781439138335).
REVIEW. First published August, 2014 (Booklist).

The Ireland of four decades ago is beautifully evoked through events in the three-year widowhood of fortysomething Nora Webster, left by the early death of her beloved Maurice with four children and scarcely enough money to cover the family expenses. A character-portrait novel in the full definition of that type—which means as meticulous in detail and as sound in psychological understanding as a biography—Irishman Tóibín’s latest rich novel, following the provocative Testament of Mary (2012), is self-assured in its authenticity, daring in the male author’s presumption of inhabiting a female protagonist, and all this is achieved through prose at once alive and understated. Nora, as witnessed by not only her offspring but also her sisters, her other relatives, and many neighbors both supportive and trying, must step out of the rather cocoon-like world she and her husband had created for themselves in the small city of Wexford. “The problem for her was that she was on her own now and that she had no idea how to live.” Tóibín’s leisurely paced but completely absorbing narrative follows Nora’s rebuilding, restoration, and reaffirmation to the point where she can put the memory of Maurice to the side and create a new life. A remarkably heart-affecting story.

High Demand Backstory: National advertising, a six-city author tour, an author video, and TV and print and radio publicity are all part of the publisher’s campaign behind Tóibín’s latest.

— Brad Hooper