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The House by the River by [Lena Manta, Gail Holst-Warhaft]
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The House by the River Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 3,542 ratings

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Length: 545 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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From the Editor

One of Greece’s most popular writers, Lena Manta is a master at weaving an epic family saga. In her novel The House by the River, set in the shadow of Mount Olympus, I identified with the five independent-minded daughters, all of whom leave the family home to strike out on their own adventures and embrace their fates. But I also empathized and grieved with the mother, Theodora, who is powerless to stop them or prevent the heartache and danger that she knows await them when they depart, one by one, down the dusty road and away from the village that has sheltered them all their lives.

The daughters’ opportunities and options in mid-twentieth-century Greece are changing rapidly—and not always for the better. Their journeys take them to North America, to Africa, from happy marriages, to devastating losses, and in some cases to fame and fortune. But as they wander far from the home where their family has been rooted for generations, there are things they forget. As the far-flung daughters build lives and families of their own, I found myself aching for them to remember Theodora and what they left behind. Until the final pages, I wasn’t sure if any of the daughters would make it home to see their mother again or if, should they return, it would be too late. But sometimes fate can be kind as well as cruel, and the places you’ve fled can once again provide shelter and redemption.

- Elizabeth DeNoma, Editor

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“In the first of bestselling Greek writer Manta’s works to be translated into English, she demonstrates her keen perception into the human heart…Gripping, intricate story lines and [a] touching finale.” Booklist

“In this poignant chronicle, Lena Manta examines the lives of five individual girls who leave their home. While their departures are typical, the possibility of their return forms the intriguing premise of this novel…The strong prose and descriptions of Greece and other locales are engrossing.” —Historical Novel Society

“A gripping and deeply touching novel, The House by the River was the page-turner of my reading month, more sentimental than I typically go in for, but intricate and well wrought. Can we ever really go home? Manta has some ideas.” Words Without Borders

About the Author

Lena Manta was born in Istanbul, Turkey, to Greek parents. She moved to Greece at a very young age and now lives with her husband and two children on the outskirts of Athens. Although she studied to be a nursery school teacher, Lena instead directed her own puppet theater before writing articles for local newspapers and working as a director for a local radio station. Manta was proclaimed Author of the Year in both 2009 and 2011 by Greek Life & Style magazine. She has written thirteen books, all of them published by Psichogios Publications, including the bestselling The House by the River, which has sold almost 250,000 copies and is the first of her books to be translated into English. Hers is a voice to be reckoned with, and each new book is a tour de force in the Greek publishing world.

Gail Holst-Warhaft is a poet and translator and has worked as a journalist, broadcaster, prose writer, academic, and musician. Among her many publications are Road to Rembetika, Theodorakis: Myth and Politics in Modern Greek Music, The Collected Poems of Nikos Kavadias, Dangerous Voices: Women’s Laments and Greek Literature, The Cue for Passion: Grief and Its Political Uses, I Had Three Lives: Selected Poems of Mikis Theodorakis, and Penelope’s Confession. She has published translations of Aeschylus and several of Greece’s leading novelists and poets. Her poems and translations have appeared in journals in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Her Kavadias translations won the Van der Bovenkamp award from Columbia University’s Translation Center, and her poem “Three Landscapes” won the Poetry Greece Award in 2001. The Fall of Athens, her most recent collection of poetry, essays, and stories about Greece, is forthcoming from Fomite Press.


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Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5
3,542 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on October 1, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on October 4, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on November 9, 2017
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Top international reviews

Pamela Scott
2.0 out of 5 stars Did nothing for me, long winded and tedious
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 29, 2017
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13 people found this helpful
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Janma
3.0 out of 5 stars I have given this book 3stars but would have liked to give it 2
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 23, 2017
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10 people found this helpful
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Harmish Waghela
2.0 out of 5 stars It’s very long. It’s very repetitive.
Reviewed in India on October 23, 2019
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Mary Josefina Cade
5.0 out of 5 stars Greek Fairy tale
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 5, 2017
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4 people found this helpful
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Zuzana N
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written story of mother and daughters
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 22, 2018
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Dee Bee
1.0 out of 5 stars Badly written.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 25, 2019
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P Barker
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotionally deep, mentally enhancing, a masterpiece
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 13, 2017
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Katathome
5.0 out of 5 stars The House By the River fully engages the reader into every nook and cranny of life - go get it, and enjoy!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 5, 2017
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Bookaholic
2.0 out of 5 stars Tedious
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 10, 2018
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Michelle
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 3, 2017
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Ms T
4.0 out of 5 stars A superb family saga
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 26, 2018
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Angela B
1.0 out of 5 stars Lost in translation
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 28, 2018
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Janie S
4.0 out of 5 stars 5 sisters looking for something else.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 20, 2017
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Jane Finch
4.0 out of 5 stars Compulsive reading
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 23, 2020
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HayHar
5.0 out of 5 stars Heart wrenching but fabulous.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 11, 2018
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