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By Lee Smith
(Shannon Ravenel Books, Paperback, 9781616203801, 348pp.)

Publication Date: May 2014

Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover, Hardcover, Hardcover, Compact Disc

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Selected by Indie Booksellers for the October 2013 Indie Next List
“This is a haunting story about the treatment of mental illness in the early 1900s. Focusing on Highland Hospital in Asheville, North Carolina, where Zelda Fitzgerald died in the fire that destroyed the hospital in 1948, the story is told through the voice of Evalina Toussaint who was sent to the hospital as a young child. Evalina's narrative is an example of the brutal early treatment of mental illness, when some patients became subjects for medical experiments. Any fan of the Fitzgeralds, the medical profession, or the history of medicine in the early 1900s will enjoy this book.”
-- Jackie Willey, Fiction Addiction, Greenville, SC
Selected by Indie Booksellers for the October 2013 Indie Next List
Selected by Indie Booksellers for the October 2013 Indie Next List


Description

Reading Lee Smith ranks among the great pleasures of American fiction . . . Gives evidence again of the grace and insight that distinguish her work. Robert Stone, author of "Death of the Black-Haired Girl"It s 1936 when orphaned thirteen-year-old Evalina Toussaint is admitted to Highland Hospital, a mental institution in Asheville, North Carolina, known for its innovative treatments for nervous disorders and addictions. Taken under the wing of the hospital s most notable patient, Zelda Fitzgerald, Evalina witnesses cascading events that lead up to the tragic fire of 1948 that killed nine women in a locked ward, Zelda among them. Author Lee Smith has created, through a seamless blending of fiction and fact, a mesmerizing novel about a world apart--in which art and madness are luminously intertwined."

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