Bethlehem

Bethlehem

Book - 2019
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"A young woman arrives at the grand ancestral home of her husband's family, hoping to fortify her cracking marriage. But what she finds is not what she expected: tragedy haunts the hallways, whispering of heartache and a past she never knew existed. Inspired by the true titans of the steel-boom era, Bethlehem is a story of temptation and regret, a story of secrets and the cost of keeping them, a story of forgiveness. It is the story of two complex women--thrown together in the name of family--who, in coming to understand each other, come finally to understand themselves." --Amazon.com.
Publisher: New York : St. Martin's Press, 2019
Edition: First Edition
ISBN: 9781250201492
1250201497
9781250201508
Branch Call Number: FICTION Kel
Description: 288 pages : illustration, genealogical tables ; 22 cm

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darladoodles
Jun 28, 2019

4.5 very impressed stars for this debut by Karen Kelly! Set in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and telling a story with two timelines; the narrative pulled me in from the first chapter. By the end I was getting out the tissues. The story of Joanna in the 1960's, but her present is greatly influenced by the past story of her mother-in-law Susannah. Kelly incorporates Susannah's narrative from the 1920's with Joanna's to give us a haunting reminder of the power of secrets, forgiveness and the importance of keeping your promises. The epilogue is this book's crowning glory. Would definitely recommend for book groups!

Chapel_Hill_MarthaW Jun 19, 2019

Like so many recent works of historical fiction, this employs a dual-timeframe technique, to generally successful effect. This is set in a small steel town in Pennsylvania and follows the intersecting lives (and, eventually, tragedies) of two wealthy families; I saw the ending coming from a mile away, and think it’s likely other readers will too, but it’s fairly interesting and makes for a fast read, even if it’s not a terribly surprising one.

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