- Paperback: 309 pages
- Publisher: Plume (March 1, 1993)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0452269571
- ISBN-13: 978-0452269576
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.9 x 7.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 459 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #737,234 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Bastard Out of Carolina Paperback – March 1, 1993
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"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
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From Publishers Weekly
Allison spikes her critically acclaimed first novel, a National Book Award nominee, with pungent characters, and saturates it with a sense of its setting--Greenville, S.C.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
Set in the rural South, this tale centers around the Boatwright family, a proud and closeknit clan known for their drinking, fighting, and womanizing. Nicknamed Bone by her Uncle Earle, Ruth Anne is the bastard child of Anney Boatwright, who has fought tirelessly to legitimize her child. When she marries Glen, a man from a good family, it appears that her prayers have been answered. However, Anney suffers a miscarriage and Glen begins drifting. He develops a contentious relationship with Bone and then begins taking sexual liberties with her. Embarrassed and unwilling to report these unwanted advances, Bone bottles them up and acts out her confusion and shame. Unaware of her husband's abusive behavior, Anney stands by her man. Eventually, a violent encounter wrests Bone away from her stepfather. In this first novel, Allison creates a rich sense of family and portrays the psychology of a sexually abused child with sensitivity and insight. Recommended for general fiction collections.
-Kimberly G. Allen, National Assn. of Home Builders Lib., Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
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Nevertheless, this tribe of losers is made up of human beings. Their souls ache all over, they stagger through life, from one mistake to the next. In Buddhism, it is said that 90% of all the suffering we endure is self-inflicted. We are our own instruments of torture : Ἑαυτὸν τιμωρούμενος, (Heauton Timorumenos) as the ancient Greek used to say. Dorothy Allison is fully conscious of it. She endows these social failures with a certain dimension of human dignity, to the point that the reader feels sorry for them, and even develops a measure of affection towards them. Monolithic characters do not move us. Unhappy, complex, guilty characters who are not “all bad” are part of us, and move us deeply. In that respect, as in many others, "Bastard of out Carolina" is indeed a masterpiece.
The style is handled masterfully. The reader, is plunged into the Deep South as in a vat of tepid water. You can feel it on your skin and in your lungs. The dialogues are so true to life that, as you read, it seems that you are listening to them. Dorothy Allison makes you see, hear, smell, touch, taste… and dream through this rough and complex world. The last sentence of each chapter lifts you up to a new, poetic level.
Ruth Anne, nicknamed Bone, tells her own story in the first person. Born to a 15-year-old unwed mother, she grows up with a strong, raucous and chaotic extended family of aunts, uncles and cousins who live near Greenville, South Carolina. Yes, they are rednecks. Yes, they are very poor. Yes, they sometimes end up in jail or, as they call it, the county farm. But Bone is safe, secure and loved in their chaotic midst. When her mother marries and this second stepfather comes into Bone's life, everything changes. Daddy Glen beats her and sexually abuses her. The story is not only about how Bone fights back, but also how her uncles and aunts help her—even when her mama does not.
Author Dorothy Allison, who writes from her personal childhood experiences, handles this explosive topic with extraordinary aplomb and prose that is realistic without being exploitative. It is only by comprehending the emotional and physical pain caused by such abuse that we in the community can help its victims.