The Life She Was Given

Wiseman’s agonizingly beautiful novel alternates between the lives of two girls:  Lilly Blackwood, who we first meet as a nine-year old in the 1930’s. Lilly was born an albino, and her parents kept her locked up in an attic bedroom—she has never been outdoors—her parents think of her as an abomination, especially her religious mother. Lilly’s chapters alternate with those of Julia Blackwood’s, a runaway who never finished high school.  Julia learns that both her parents are dead and she has inherited their horse farm and country house, so she moves home. Lilly’s mother decides to sell her to a traveling circus, where she becomes a freak act in the sideshow due to her lack of skin or hair color. She loves all the animals, especially the elephants, and eventually, after many years of mistreatment, becomes part of the elephant act, the star attraction. Meanwhile, Julia begins to explore her new home and discovers some unexplained papers, objects and an attic bedroom, and begins to piece together the mystery of her family’s dark secrets, especially the fate of her sister, Lilly, who was said to have died as an infant. Julia and Lilly are wonderfully drawn characters who face enormous challenges and tragedy with hopeful, resilient and warm spirits. This title is also available in our Large Print collection.

The life she was givenBy Wiseman, Ellen Marie author.

"From acclaimed author Ellen Marie Wiseman comes a vivid, daring novel about the devastating power of family secrets--beginning in the poignant, lurid world of a Depression-era traveling circus and coming full circle in the transformative 1950s." Publisher annotation

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October/November 2017 New & On Order DVD/Blu-ray
A listing of DVD's and Blu-ray added to the collection in October/November 2017
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