The Rise of Life on Earth (New Directions Paperbook) (Paperback)

By Joyce Carol Oates

New Directions Publishing Corporation, 9780811212137, 142pp.

Publication Date: September 17, 1992

List Price: 15.95*
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Selected by The New York Times Book Review as one of the most notable books of 1991, Joyce Carol Oates's The Rise of Life on Earth is a memorable portrait of one of the "insulted and injured" of American society. Set in the underside of working-class Detroit of the '60s and '70s, this short, lyric novel sketches Kathleen Hennessy's violent childhood shattered by a broken home, child-beating, and murder and follows her into her early adult years as a hospital health-care worker. Overworked, underpaid, and quietly overzealous, Kathleen falls in love with a young doctor, whose exploitation of her sets the course of the remainder of her life, in which her passivity masks a deep fury and secret resolve to take revenge.