Nell Leyshon The Colour of Milk: Novel

ISBN 13: 9780062245823

The Colour of Milk: Novel

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9780062245823: The Colour of Milk: Novel
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When her father, a man whose anger is unleashed at the slightest provocation, sends her to work for the local vicar and his invalid wife, Mary finds her new place of employment an endless source of books and learning, but discovers that such precious knowledge comes with a devastating price.

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Review:

Shocking and haunting. Read it, in one sitting (Spectator)

Charming, Brontë-esque, compelling, special and hard to forget. I loved it (Marian Keyes)

A small tour de force - a wonderfully convincing voice, and a devastating story told with great skill (Penelope Lively)

Starts deceptively quietly, describing a life of rural hardships and limited prospects, but bit by bit, letter by letter, it reveals a world of potential that is shattered by human fallibility (Daily Telegraph)

Astounding . . . one of the most compelling narrators I've ever encountered (Stylist)

It is once in a blue moon that an author creates a voice quite as alive and as startling as Mary's. Leyshon deserves to be showered with awards (Sunday Express)

Brilliant, devastating and unforgettable (Easy Living)

Spare and beautifully crafted, compelling. Like a love letter to the power of words (Marie Claire)

An astounding read. Like the best bits of Hardy's Tess of the D'Ubervilles . . . Mary is one of the most compelling narrators I've ever encountered . . . packs a powerful punch . . . a very British gem (Stylist)

I loved it. Charming, Brontë-esque, compelling, special and hard to forget. I loved Mary's voice - so inspiring and likeable. Such a hopeful book (Marian Keyes)

From the Back Cover:

"this is my book and i am writing it by my own hand."

Mary and her three sisters rise every day to backbreaking farmwork that threatens to suppress their own awakening desires, whether it's Violet's pull toward womanhood or Beatrice's affinity for the Scriptures. But it's their father, whose anger is unleashed at the slightest provocation, who stands to deliver the most harm. Only Mary, fierce of tongue and a spitfire since birth, dares to stand up to him. When he sends her to work for the local vicar and his invalid wife in their house on the hill, he deals her the only blow she may not survive.

Within walking distance of her family farm, the vicarage is a world away a curious, unsettling place unlike any she has ever known. Teeming with the sexuality of the vicar's young son and the manipulations of another servant, it is also a place of books and learning a source of endless joy. Yet as young Mary soon discovers, such precious knowledge comes at a devastating price, as is gradually made clear once she begins the task of telling her own story.

Reminiscent of Alias Grace in the exploration of the power dynamics between servants and those they serve and of Celie's struggles in The Color Purple, this quietly devastating tour de force reminds us that knowledge can destroy even as it empowers.

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Leyshon, Nell
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