The Secret of Raven Point

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Description

From the award-winning author of Easter Island comes a powerful, "unputdownable" (Vogue.com) novel of love, loss, and redemption amid the ruins of war-torn Italy.

1943: When seventeen-year-old Juliet Dufresne receives a cryptic letter from her enlisted brother and then discovers that he's been reported missing in action, she lies about her age and travels to the front lines as an army nurse, determined to find him. Shy and awkward, Juliet is thrust into the bloody chaos of a field hospital, a sprawling encampment north of Rome where she forges new friendships and is increasingly consumed by the plight of her patients. One in particular, Christopher Barnaby, a deserter awaiting court martial, may hold the answer to her brother's whereabouts--but the trauma of war has left him catatonic. Racing against the clock, Juliet works with an enigmatic young psychiatrist, Dr. Henry Willard, to break Barnaby's silence before the authorities take him away. Plunged into the horrifying depths of one man's memories of combat, Juliet and Willard together plumb the moral nuances of a so-called "just war" and face the dangers of their own deepening emotional connection.

In vibrant, arresting prose, Vanderbes tells the story of one girl's fierce determination to find her brother as she comes of age in a time of unrelenting violence. An unforgettable war saga that captures the experiences of soldiers long after the battles have ended, The Secret of Raven Point is heartbreaking, and ultimately uplifting: "The only disappointing thing about this book is that it has to end" (Library Journal, starred review).

Product Details

Price: $17.00
Publisher: Scribner Book Company
Published Date: April 07, 2015
Pages: 336
Dimensions: 5.2 X 0.9 X 7.9 inches | 0.56 pounds
ISBN: 9781439167045
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Jennifer Vanderbes is the author of the novelEaster Island, which was translated into sixteen languages, and her essays and reviews have appeared in the New York Times and the Washington Post.

Reviews

"The Secret of Raven Point is about piecing together meaning in lives and minds shattered by war. It's a meditation on the power of steadfast love in all its forms -romantic, fraternal, platonic, even divine--to restore wholeness out of chaos, and light out of unspeakable darkness. Jennifer Vanderbes gives us characters we care about and a story we believe in an engrossing novel that brings home the particularity of war. A moving tribute to a generation of men and women whose stories, and whose lives, for the most part are now lost to us, it's a great read."--M.L. Stedman, author of The Light Between Oceans
"The Secret of Raven Point is strikingly vivid, tackling war's moral ambiguities from the open-eyed perspective of a young American woman on the cusp of adulthood...Vanderbes's unputdownable third novel... finds contemporary resonance in classic themes of humanity and loyalty tested by extremes...[Juliet is] her most indelible character to date."--Megan O'Grady "Vogue.com "
"The Secret of Raven Point draws the reader in with evocative period drama and a rich emotional portrait of its heroine. An arresting, exciting journey of discovery from an extremely talented author."--Matthew Pearl "author of The Technologists and The Dante Club "
"Jennifer Vanderbes' The Secret of Raven Point should do for war-era Italy what Hilary Mantel has done for 1500's England. That is, it proves that fiction can be history with blood in its veins, quickening for us the violence and sadness and the awful incongruity of war. A brilliant novelist, and a book to treasure and never to forget."--Darin Strauss "author of Chang & Eng and Half a Life "
"The Secret of Raven Point is a subtle evocation of war and loss, which Jennifer Vanderbes--with extraordinary cleverness and restraint--explores slantwise, the story coming visible through its glimmering contours, like an embossing on fine paper or an impression in snow."--Lauren Groff "author of Arcadia "
"The Secret of Raven Point is that rare book that reminds us of the deep, immersive pleasures of novel-reading: of getting lost in a story, of being transported to another time and place, of growing so attached to characters that they feel as present and real as one's own friends. Jennifer Vanderbes takes a harrowing but little-known chapter from WWII history and through her compassionate and brilliant rendering, transforms it into a story that is urgent, personal, and profoundly moving."--Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, National Book Award-Nominated author of Madeleine is Sleeping