Cascade by Maryanne O’Hara (Giveaway)

Cascade by Maryanne O’Hara
Publisher: Viking Adult
Publication Date: August 2012 (Paperback: April 2013)
Categories: Historical Fiction

During the 1930s, an artist and reluctant new wife struggles to reconcile her heart’s ambitions with the promises she has made

Cascade, Massachusetts, 1935. Desdemona Hart Spaulding, a promising young artist, abandoned her dreams of working in New York City to rescue her father. Two months later he is dead and Dez is stuck in a marriage to reliable but child-hungry Asa Spaulding. Dez also stands to lose her father’s legacy, the Cascade Shakespeare Theater, as the Massachusetts Water Authority decides whether to flood Cascade to create a reservoir.

Amid this turmoil arrives Jacob Solomon, a fellow artist for whom Dez feels an immediate and strong attraction. As their relationship reaches a pivotal moment, a man is found dead and the town accuses Jacob, a Jewish outsider. But the tide turns when Dez’s idea for a series of painted postcards is picked up by The American Sunday Standard and she abruptly finds herself back on the path to independence. New York City and a life with Jacob both beckon, but what will she have to give up along the way?

My Thoughts:

This book has a lot going on. There is filial duty, art, marriage, illicit love, bigotry, bankruptcy and the threat of losing a lovely little town due to the thirsty residents of Boston.

Dez puts her artistic career plans on the back-burner to take care of her ailing father. One decision follows another and she finds herself in an unhappy marriage. Asa is solid and he’s a good man. But they want vastly different things. Dez is financially dependent on her husband…and he knows it. (I don’t think I’ve ever read about a more incongruous relationship.)

Her most difficult struggle is that she isn’t able to do what she loves. Dez can’t find a way to be herself. It’s hard to be an individual and an artist in the small town of Cascade. She is expected to have babies, be a good wife, and count her blessings. (This is in 1935, the pressure on women was…well, you know.)

Dez feels an immediate connection with the fellow artist Jacob. Their romance felt a bit forced but it’s understandable why they are attracted to one another and it does add another layer to this tale.

Cascade is about obligations and dreams and one woman’s struggle to balance the two. Even though this story takes place in the 30’s I think it’s message is as timely as ever.

And would you take a look at that cover? Stunning!

Please enter the giveaway below:

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Literary Blog Hop~GIVEAWAY!

The Literary Blog Hop hosted by Judith at Leeswammes’ Blog
Welcome to The Relentless Reader! 
My Literary Blog Hop Giveaway is a hardcover copy of Y by Marjorie Celona
Good luck! 
“Y. That perfect letter. The wishbone, fork in the road, empty wineglass. The question we ask over and over. Why? . . . My life begins at the Y.” So opens Marjorie Celona’s highly acclaimed and exquisitely rendered debut about a wise-beyond-her-years foster child abandoned as a newborn on the doorstep of the local YMCA. Swaddled in a dirty gray sweatshirt with nothing but a Swiss Army knife tucked between her feet, little Shannon is discovered by a man who catches only a glimpse of her troubled mother as she disappears from view. That morning, all three lives are forever changed.

Bounced between foster homes, Shannon endures abuse and neglect until she finally finds stability with Miranda, a kind but no-nonsense single mother with a free-spirited daughter of her own. Yet Shannon defines life on her own terms, refusing to settle down, and never stops longing to uncover her roots—especially the stubborn question of why her mother would abandon her on the day she was born.

Brilliantly and hauntingly interwoven with Shannon’s story is the tale of her mother, Yula, a girl herself who is facing a desperate fate in the hours and days leading up to Shannon’s birth. As past and present converge, tells an unforgettable story of identity, inheritance, and, ultimately, forgiveness. Celona’s ravishingly beautiful novel offers a deeply affecting look at the choices we make and what it means to be a family, and it marks the debut of a magnificent new voice in contemporary fiction.

Check out the rest of the participants:

  1. Leeswammes
  2. The Book Garden
  3. Sam Still Reading
  4. Candle Beam Book Blog
  5. Ciska’s Book Chest
  6. Too Fond
  7. Alex in Leeds
  8. Under a Gray Sky
  9. Bibliosue
  10. The Book Club Blog
  11. Fingers & Prose
  12. Lori Howell
  13. Rikki’s Teleidoscope
  14. Girl vs Bookshelf
  15. Lizzy’s Literary Life (Europe)
  16. Booklover Book Reviews
  17. The Blog of Litwits
  18. Reading World (USA/Can)
  19. Seaside Book Nook
  20. Curiosity Killed the Bookworm
  21. The Book Diva’s Reads
  22. Breieninpeking (Europe)
  23. 2606 Books and Counting
  24. Giraffe Days
  25. Lucybird’s Book Blog
  1. Roof Beam Reader
  2. The Relentless Reader
  3. Read in a Single Sitting
  4. My Diary (Malaysia)
  5. Heavenali
  6. Dolce Belezza (USA)
  7. The Misfortune of Knowing
  8. My Devotional Thoughts
  9. Nishita’s Rants and Raves
  10. Book Nympho
  11. Kaggsysbookishramblings
  12. Quixotic Magpie
  13. Lost Generation Reader
  14. BookBelle
  15. Under My Apple Tree (USA)
  16. Mondays with Mac
  17. Page Plucker

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