Hilda and Pearl: A Novel

Paperback | October 2, 2001

byAlice Mattison

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To Frances, an only child living in McCarthy-era Brooklyn, her mother, Hilda, and her aunt Pearl seem as if they have always been friends. Frances does not question the love between the two women until her father's job as a teacher is threatened by anti-Communism, just as Frances begins to learn about her family's past. Why does Hilda refer to her "first pregnancy," as if Frances wasn't her only child? Whose baby shoes are hidden in Hilda's dresser drawer? Why is there tension when Pearl and her husband come to visit?

The story of a young girl in the fifties and her elders' coming-of-age in the unquiet thirties, this book resonates deeply, revealing in beautiful, clear language the complexities of friendship and loss.

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To Frances, an only child living in McCarthy-era Brooklyn, her mother, Hilda, and her aunt Pearl seem as if they have always been friends. Frances does not question the love between the two women until her father's job as a teacher is threatened by anti-Communism, just as Frances begins to learn about her family's past. Why does Hilda ...

Alice Mattison is the author of four novels, three previous short story collections, and a volume of poetry. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize, The New Yorker, The Threepenny Review, Glimmer Train, and Ploughshares. She teaches fiction in the Bennington Writing Se...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:304 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.69 inPublished:October 2, 2001Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0060936932

ISBN - 13:9780060936938

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“[A] quietly suspenseful, psychologically penetrating novel…a perceptive study of adolescence and a dramatic exploration of family relationships.” (Publishers Weekly)