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The illness lesson : a novel

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Book

First edition.

Sarah Waters meets Red Clocks in this searing novel, set at an all-girl school in 19th century Massachusetts, which probes the timeless question: who gets to control a woman's body and why. The year is 1871. In Ashwell, Massachusetts, at the farm of Samuel Hood and his daughter, Caroline, a mysterious flock of red birds descends. Samuel, whose fame as a philosopher has waned in recent years, takes the birds' appearance as an omen that the time is ripe for his newest venture. He will start a school for young women, guiding their intellectual development as he has so carefully guided his daughter's. Despite Caroline's misgivings, Samuel's vision--revolutionary, as always; noble, as always; full of holes, as always--takes shape. It's not long before the students begin to manifest bizarre symptoms. Rashes, fits, headaches, verbal tics, night wanderings. In desperation, the school turns to the ministering of a sinister physician--based on a real historic treatment--just as Caroline's body, too, begins its betrayal. As the girls' conditions worsens, long-buried secrets emerge, and Caroline must confront the all-male, all-knowing authorities around her, the ones who insist the voices of the sufferers are unreliable. In order to save herself, Caroline may have to destroy everything she's ever known. Written in intensely vivid prose and brimming with psychological insight, The Illness Lesson is a powerful exploration of women's bodies, women's minds, and the time-honored tradition of doubting both.

Available copies

  • 1 of 7 copies available at OWWL.

Current holds

1 current hold with 7 total copies.
Location Call Number /
Shelving Location
Barcode Status /
Due Date
Macedon Public Library FIC BEA (Text)
Adult New Fiction
52121300651495
Checked out
06/30/2020
This copy is new and can only be picked up at this library.
Naples Library FIC BEA (Text)
New Fiction
52124300386773
Checked out
06/30/2020
This copy is new and can only be picked up at this library.
Newark Public Library FIC BEA (Text)
Adult New Materials
52125300880616
Checked out
06/30/2020
This copy is new and can only be picked up at this library.
Sodus Community Library FIC BEA (Text)
Adult Fiction
52148300526161
Checked out
06/30/2020
This copy is new and can only be picked up at this library.
Stevens Memorial Community Library - Attica BEAM (Text)
New Books
52149100593526
Available
-
This copy is new and can only be picked up at this library.
Victor Farmington Library BEA (Text)
Adult New Materials
52128300918162
Checked out
06/30/2020
This copy is new and can only be picked up at this library.
Wood Library Association - Canandaigua FIC BEA (Text)
Adult New Materials
31846002877909
Checked out
06/30/2020
This copy is new and can only be picked up at this library.

Additional Resources