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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

The Mare by Mary Gaitskill

I had not heard of this author before, even though she has a previous book with critical acclaim.  What can I say, I am just not able to keep up with the volume of great writing out there.  I saw this on the New York Times Notable book list and really enjoyed it.  The book goes between the points of view of a Dominican immigrant named Silvia, her young daughter, Velvet and the people that Velvet meets on her Fresh Air summer in upstate New York.  Her host family are Ginger and Paul, and they live next door to a horse stable.  Ginger is disappointed that she is not a mother and her husband doesn't want to adopt, so she enters into the relationship with Velvet with an agenda that is not exactly perfect for Velvet but she does have emotional intelligence, which is sorely lacking in other areas of Velvet's life.  Velvet meets Pat, a horse woman who sees Velvet as a natural with horses but as someone who struggles with everything else.  Pat and Ginger try to nurture a part of Velvet that her family and her environment are trying to beat out of her, literally.  Very interesting read, a book I had trouble putting down.

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