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'Til the Well Runs Dry: A Novel Hardcover – April 22, 2014
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“Marcia's story, told lovingly in this, Francis-Sharma's debut novel, is as universally touching as it is original.” ―The New York Times
“[A] remarkably accomplished first-time novelist. . . .Francis-Sharma's spellbinding, intimately detailed, psychologically lush, and suspenseful tale of racial and sexual trauma, hard work, love, and family devotion makes personal the injustice people endured in the years leading up to the civil rights movement in both multicultural Trinidad and segregated America.” ―Booklist (Starred Review)
“You'll hear the calypso music in this vivid debut about a spirited seamstress and devoted mother with a family secret.” ―People
“A saga ripe with heartbreak and joy . . . Francis-Sharma delivers a rich and satisfying debut on the ties of family, love, and culture.” ―Kirkus Reviews
“Have you ever met a family whose every tear, every triumph, every heartbreak made your heart leap? I could not put this book down. An unforgettable journey. ” ―Dolen Perkins-Valdez, author of the New York Times bestseller Wench
“Lauren Francis-Sharma takes us to the island of Trinidad, the ‘Land of the hummingbird,' in a story that feels like a song, with a chorus of voices across generations, revealing a culture as vibrant and enriching as it is overlooked by those on the mainland.” ―Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Alphonse Fletcher University Professor, Harvard University
“Lauren Francis-Sharma is a true story-teller.‘Til the Well Runs Dry burns through its telling like the best gossip, but has the controlled mystery of a fairytale. This narrative is surprising, winding and always gratifying.” ―Tiphanie Yanique, author of Land of Love and Drowning
“10 Titles to Pick Up Now” ―O, The Oprah Magazine
“'Til The Well Runs Dry is unforgettable. Like the best poetry, it has all the high notes: a beautiful girl, a spell that leads to love and death, and a terrible secret -- in language pierced with the cries and colors of the West Indies. But this is not just a story; it's the author's retelling of her own origins. Sweet, brutal, and unsparing, this is Lauren Francis-Sharma's first book, yet she commands the page.” ―Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Deep End of the Ocean
“An evocative and emotionally resonant family saga with one of the most compelling heroines I've met in a long time. A story of love, loss, and triumph set in a world of secret and moral consequence. Like the Obeah woman in her story, Lauren Francis-Sharma has cast a spell that refuses to release me. I won't forget this story or the voice of this wonderful new writer any time soon.” ―Brunonia Barry, New York Times bestselling author of The Lace Reader
“‘Alone, I sat on the sand and took in the beauty of my grandmother's land' was the reason Lauren Francis-Sharma gave for writing her remarkable debut ‘Til The Well Runs Dry. I was swept away by this thunderous, witty, and deeply soulful novel about family, Trinidad, secrets, porch sitters, dirt roads and passion. And so satisfying, like the first time I read my aunt's novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God.” ―Lucy Anne Hurston
“A first novel, yes. But balanced with experiences, imagery, and characters that linger on the flesh. Eyes. In the heart. And as I read the last paragraph and closed the book, I knew that I had experienced an amazing journey of light. Thank you my dear sister for this wonderful book.” ―Sonia Sanchez, poet and writer
“I devoured ‘Til the Well Runs Dry in three short nights. I couldn't wait to get back to the stories and the characters who I almost didn't want to be fiction, because I cared so much about their ever-after. I found Lauren Francis-Sharma's world, so familiar to me, a place with hidden corners hiding deep secrets I couldn't wait to unravel and then to have my breath pause as they revealed themselves in ways I couldn't imagine. Her story might be about a girl from Blanchisseuse, but above that it is an extraordinary story about a misunderstood girl who knows how to stand her ground.” ―Victoria Brown, author of Minding Ben
“With an intense voice, Lauren Francis-Sharma draws us into old Trinidad, weaving a classic immigrant's tale, punctuated with the heady scents and rhythms of a bygone time, carrying us to the new world.” ―Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan, author of A Tiger in the Kitchen
“Lauren Francis-Sharma's debut novel, 'Til the Well Runs Dry, illuminates a complex and beautiful Trinidad… [And] at the heart of 'Til the Well Runs Dry is Marcia Garcia's delightful, eccentric story of several decades, several children, much resilience, many secrets, romance, and harrowing immigration. In 'Til the Well Runs Dry, Lauren Francis-Sharma has gone looking for her own personal history and has written as well an important narrative celebrating the African and South Asian people who created Caribbean culture.” ―Breena Clarke, bestselling author of River, Cross My Heart and Angels Make Their Hope Here
“Francis-Sharma's breathtaking debut . . . is as stunning as the artwork on the cover. She creates a heroine in Garcia that readers will root for--and remember fondly. This story of one woman's journey of womanhood and discernment is not to be missed.” ―Sergie Willoughby, The Network Journal
- Publisher : Henry Holt and Co. (April 22, 2014)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 400 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0805098038
- ISBN-13 : 978-0805098037
- Item Weight : 1.25 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.34 x 1.29 x 9.46 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #791,948 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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The story opens in a rural village in Trinidad during World War II, a time in which the population was called upon to endure certain deprivation and at which time life’s circumstances for Marcia Garcia, a young dressmaker was such that she had to fend for herself and two special needs children. Her situation was dire, with food being rationed by the colonial powers that ruled the island and no one to turn to because her mother was deceased and her father had been run out of the village.
In the midst of this near destitute existence came Farouk Karam a young policeman into her life. After reading a few pages I could see that this was high-quality story telling. I purchased the book. The story unfolded like a hike through an unbeaten path in the wilds of two countries, Trinidad and the United States, leaving me eager to discover where the trek would lead.
I thoroughly enjoyed the journey. Approaching every hill one had to know what was on the other side. Around every bend there was something new to pique my interest; the unforgettable people one met along the way, like Marcia and Farouk’s children; the endearing Jacqueline, the precocious Yvonne, the recalcitrant Patsy and the wayward Wesley, all portrayed with such a caring and detailed craftsmanship, one had to know what would become of this family.
I rushed home every evening for three days to enjoy this wonderful story told in such a beautiful and unique style. I have read several hundred novels in my time and I must say ‘Til the Well Runs Dry’ is one of the best I have ever read. I compare it with the great works of literature whether classic or contemporary. Every reader should experience the wonder that is ‘Til the Well Runs Dry’. Well done Lauren Francis-Sharma!