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Exiles: A Novel

Item Number: 23486
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Exiles: A Novel

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Review Provided By TiberRiver.com - THE Catholic Book Review Site
Average Rating: This item received 4 stars overall.

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 General Description:

Exiles: A Novel by Ron Hansen

"In December 1875 the steamship Deutschland left Bremen, Germany, bound for America. On board were five nuns, exiled by a ban on religious orders, bound to begin their lives anew in Missouri. Their journey would end when the Deutschland ran aground at the mouth of the Thames and all five drowned. Ron Hansen tells their harrowing story, but also that of the poet and seminarian Gerard Manley Hopkins, and how the shipwreck moved him to write a grand poem, The Wreck of the Deutschland, a revelatory work read throughout the world today. Combining a thrilling tragedy at sea, with the seeming shipwreck of Hopkins's own life, "Hansen brilliantly, if soberly, weaves two interrelated story lines into a riveting novel" (Booklist).

Ron Hansen is an award-winning author of seven novels which include The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, Mariette in Ecstasy and Atticus, a finalist for the National Book Award. He is professor of English Literature at Santa Clara University and was ordained a deacon in the Roman Catholic Church in 2007.

"[An] Elegant, meditative novel . . . [In] the sublime Mariette in Ecstasy, Hansen deftly conveyed the intensity of religious experience that verged on insanity. Exiles, for all its storminess, is a quieter but equally affecting depiction of a spiritually and artistically transcen-dent life."--The Boston Globe

"Dazzling and beautiful . . .  it kept me up after midnight three nights in a row."--The Washington Post

"One of our finest novelists . . . Hansen conveys a man conflicted by his callings as both a spiritual vessel and a full-blooded artist."--Enterainment Weekly (Grade: A)


"Ron Hansen sketches a delicate portrait of Hopkins. . . . He brings his usual magic to the task."--Chicago Tribune
 
"A shifting, sympathetic depiction of piety and piety's torments . . . a brave meditation on religious experience."--The News and Observer


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9780312428341
240
8 1/4"  (20.9 cm) x 5 1/2"  (13.9 cm)
More Macmillan Gifts
2009

Review Provided By TiberRiver.com - THE Catholic Book Review Site

This item received 4 stars overall. An unflinching meditation upon death and our exile from Paradise

“We sometimes seem God’s playthings.  The dice he rolls.  But even though he can seem the source of our miseries, our faith tells us that God is good. Always.”

That’s the central tension in Ron Hansen’s Exiles, which portrays the fate of five nuns on board the shipwrecked Deutschland and the life of the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, who composed one of his most famous poems in their honor.  Via parallel narratives, the novel explores the idea of expatriation in the lives of its central characters: five Sisters of St. Francis, Daughters of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary, exiled from Full Review...

This item received 4 stars overall. Stunning characters that pull at your heartstrings!

Exiles: A Novel surprised me! Not only is this book a work of art but can be read and enjoyed by all reading levels. While I did find myself not understanding everything that was referred to, the story itself drew me in and kept me in the raging waters of this tale.
 
As you learn more and more about each central character you find yourself more invested in their future. Sister Aurea eventually held the biggest place in my heart. Her childlike personality and joyful soul reaches out from the pages.  Each of the 5 nuns from the story will capture your attention and create an urgency that will keep you up reading well past bedtime. The fact that you already know the ending will not stop you from wanting to learn each and every piece of information that you can about these Exiles.
 
Hansen creates a relatable past for each Full Review...

 
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