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After the Dam: Book summary and reviews of After the Dam by Amy Hassinger

After the Dam

by Amy Hassinger

After the Dam by Amy Hassinger X
After the Dam by Amy Hassinger
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2016
    344 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

From the acclaimed author of Nina: Adolescence and The Priest's Madonna comes a gripping new novel that depicts the transformative power of motherhood with honesty, wit, and compassion.

Undone by motherhood, judged by her husband, thirty-two-year-old Rachel Clayborne flees with her baby in the middle of the night for the one place on earth that's been her refuge: her grandmother's lakehouse in northern Wisconsin. Hoping to reconnect with a former, healthier self, she instead faces a confused and dying grandmother, her ever-present nurse who seems bent on thwarting each of Rachel's desires, and a changed ex-boyfriend - her first and most passionate love. As a constant rain threatens the nearby dam, Rachel struggles to discern what's happened to the past, who she's become, and what kind of a life she will make for herself now - one that clings to ghosts or opens bravely to a wild new geography.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Taut, beautifully written, and suspenseful, this resonant, feminist drama eschews easy answers. A page-turner of the highest caliber." - Kirkus

"Hassinger has written the playbook for what the future looks like when we fail to consider the bigger picture... multidimensional." - Los Angeles Review of Books

"A consistently compelling and deftly crafted novel with an underlying message about the transformative power of motherhood, After the Dam reveals author Amy Hassinger as an impressively skilled storyteller of the first order. This is a novel that will linger in the mind and memory long after the book itself has been finished and set back upon the shelf. After the Dam is strongly recommended for personal reading lists and community library General Fiction collections." - Midwest Book Review

"This book does what my favorite books always do: grab the reader with tautness and fierce intelligence, so that even the quiet drama of it gets pulled into the page-turning qualities of the narrative. I could say, Read this book. Instead I'll say, Start this book. You won't stop reading until its terrific ending." - Leigh Allison Wilson, author of Wind and From the Bottom Up

"Forces of nature - big water and big love - come together in this literary page-turner. Amy Hassinger has woven a tale out of the very earth where the Ojibwe live. her protagonist - Rachel - is a lover, mother, and activist, a woman of our time on a hero's journey toward wholeness." - Patricia Henley, author of Hummingbird House, finalist for the National Book Award

"Told with heartbreaking clarity about what it means to be a mother - a complex and vulnerable human being with responsibilities to the past and the future, After the Dam is a story about discovering the difference between knowledge and wisdom. Amy Hassinger's lyrical prose is a joy to read." - Karen Shoemaker, author of The Meaning of Names and Night Sounds and Other Stories

"How to reconcile rival claims to the same homeland? How to reconcile the needs of her infant daughter and her dutiful husband with her own need for self-fulfillment? Amy Hassinger poses the questions vividly, without pretending there are easy answers." - Scott Russell Sanders, author of Earth Works: Selected Essays

The information about After the Dam shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Amy Hassinger

Amy Hassinger is the author ofNina: Adolescence and The Priest's Madonna. Her writing has been translated into five languages and has won awards from Creative Nonfiction, Publisher's Weekly, and the Illinois Arts Council. Her work has appeared in numerous venues, including The New York Times, Creative Nonfiction, The Writers' Chronicle, and The Los Angeles Review of Books. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and teaches in the University of Nebraska's MFA in Writing Program.

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