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In the Breeze of Passing Things [Hardcover]

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Item description for In the Breeze of Passing Things by Nicole Louise Reid...

In the Breeze of Passing Things by Nicole Louise Reid

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Item Specifications...

Pages   274
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.68" Width: 6.16" Height: 1.02"
Weight:   0.97 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Nov 14, 2003
Publisher   MacAdam/Cage
ISBN  1931561427  
ISBN13  9781931561426  

Availability  0 units.

More About Nicole Louise Reid

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Nicole Louise Reid's short stories and poems have appeared in The Southern Review, Quarterly West, Meridian, Black Warrior Review, and Crab Orchard Review. Before her family settled in the Washington, D.C. area, she spent her early years moving--from Dallas to Appalachia--collecting the voices of characters who would come to populate her fiction. She now teaches fiction at Penn State Erie. The Behrend College. In the Breeze of Passing Things is her first novel.

Nicole Louise Reid currently resides in Arlington, in the state of Virginia. Nicole Louise Reid was born in 1973.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Literary
3Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > General
4Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > Mystery > General

Reviews - What do customers think about In the Breeze of Passing Things?

exuberance is beauty  Feb 11, 2004
In a time when dull, drab, journalistic prose and cardboard, 2-dimensional, political ideogrammatic characters are the norm in american fiction it is always refreshing to hear a voice of urgent humanity; a voice rich with feeling. I have heard people call this book juvinille in content, as if it should be put in the young adult section of the bookstore but such a viewpoint is a little naive. This book is still fiction, fiction written by a 30+ year old, college professor, and not a adolescent girl. With that in mind one may be able to view and value this novel more accurately. It is incredibly intense and yet hushed. It is dreamily lyrical and yet crisp in its details. It rushes along with a breezy energy and yet it is certainly not another piece of plotless post-modern refuse. I'd call it poetic if I didn't consider doing so an insult to what prose is truly capable of when in the hands of a great writer. In terms of her level of talent and origionality of voice I'd go so far as to compare her to Murdoch, Nabokov, Anthony Burgess (though in specific terms she hardly resembles any of the above). Novelists, stylists, storytellers like Nicole Louise Reid only come around so often. Buy this book if you know what's good for you.
competent technique but is it literature  Nov 16, 2003
A well written, at times exceedingly poetic first novel. We follow Iva and hear her, follow the narrowing rooms of her life, but I wondered if this is an adult novel--not always--but enough that made me question its audience. I could see this as a perfect read for my 16 year old daughter, but not sure it moves into the realm of adult fiction--actually since this arrived as a review copy, I paused halfway through and read its PR to see if I'd made a mistake and it was young adult fiction; it's as if the technique it uses to speak never quite raises the narrative voice into language that is
art--almost art, yes, but in the end I felt as I did after watching a really well made movie for teenagers. I wanted a richer diction, more risk, emotional engagement, and a shift of voice.
(3.5)"In a permanent state of temporary"  Nov 14, 2003
This is one of those small, but intense novels, an attempt to exorcise the demons of the past, in this case, the shadowed memories of a ten-year-old girl, Iva. The familiar theme of children set adrift by their parent's emotional inadequacies is, unfortunately, ever a source of inspiration as those children purge past hurts by telling the stories that shaped their childhoods. The common anthem of the dislocated American family, the cycle of dysfunction is so entrenched that it has a rhythm all its own, as one generation after another flounders, never quite able to set things right.

Dragging along little sister Mally from one house to another on a three-year odyssey of disenfranchised childhood, Iva narrates the sad tale of a mother and two daughters as they search for a place to make a home, one minus the beloved father. The parents, Jameson and Lilly Giles, once so perfectly matched in their love for one another, have come unglued by Jameson's suicidal obsession and his consistent refusal to take the medications that would offer him some relief. But Jameson is also attached to his morbid obsessions and unwilling to relinquish them for the real-time love of wife and children.

Lilly flees with the girls, an attempt to rescue them all from Jameson's downward spiral. She has finally reached a point where living with the love is more painful than the loss. But Ida is her daddy's girl, and she misses her father most grievously, perhaps as much as Lilly. Lilly is afraid that her oldest daughter will be understand the dynamics of the marriage and turn her adolescent pain on her mother. But Lilly's deepest fear is that Iva will recognize her mother's weakness as a woman without a man, her complicity in this melodrama that makes an awful game out of homelessness.

In the light of day, their so-called adventure drags mother and daughters into ever more desperate circumstances, as Lilly sells everything they own and they are left with only the car, where they often sleep at night, off the road: "And even if she forgets we're children who's teeth could rot, Mother knows us here." Moving from rented house to rented house, motel to motel, Lilly's sister offers the emotional orphans a place to stay, crowding them into an already full house of four. Eventually, this home is too small to hold so many personalities as tempers flare. Years have passed, three years of anguish for Iva, who yearns desperately for a father she has not seen in what seems a lifetime. Iva decides she can wait no more for other people to determine the course of her life.

The author writes with stunning, lyrical prose that does much to lift the sadness that is such a part of Iva's fragile composure. Still, this story is told by a grown woman, well hidden inside a pre-adolescent girl, one who longs to change a lonely past. The novel's confessional, uncertain tone has the distant voice of confused childhood, trapped by the endlessly selfish behavior of the adults who provide shelter. But little girls grow up to become women. Then caution is imperative, lest a woman nourish her lost self, always searching, rather than embracing the courage of the true self. Luan Gaines/2003.


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