Flower Children by Maxine Swann

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?A work of stunning lyricism and intense originality?(Mary Gordon, author of Pearl). From an award-winning short story writer comes this spare, lively, moving novel, quickly embraced by critics and readers, portraying the strangely celebrated and unsupervised childhood of four hippie offspring in the 1970s and 80s. Based on the author?s own upbringing, Flower Children tells the story of four children growing up in rural Pennsylvania, impossibly at odds with their surroundings. In time, as the sheltered utopia their parents have created begins to collapse, the children long for structure and restraint?and all their parents have avoided.


About Maxine Swann

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MAXINE SWANN is the author of Serious Girls and Flower Children, for which she received the Harold D. Vursell Memorial Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She has also been awarded Ploughshares' Cohen Award for best fiction of the year, an O. Henry Prize, and a Pushcart Prize, and her work has been included in The Best American Short Stories of 1998 and 2006. Swann, who has also lived in Paris and Pakistan, has been living in Buenos Aires since 2001.
Published June 3, 2008 by Riverhead. 228 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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[or] concealed,” but soon their father has moved out, their mother has a new boyfriend and the kids are attending school, where “they’re mortified by what they know and have seen.” (Most grade-schoolers have not heard their father describe the differences between the way their mother and other wo...

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The New York Times

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In her keenly observed novel, Maxine Swann depicts four children who worry that their hippie parents’ unconventional lifestyle has left them outside the mainstream.

Jul 03 2007 | Read Full Review of Flower Children

The New York Times

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Maxine Swann’s new book, “Flower Children,” is a “novel in stories” that offers shimmering, episodic glimpses into the life of a hippie family in the 1970s — four children and two eccentric parents.

Aug 12 2007 | Read Full Review of Flower Children


I was born in 1957, just a little too late to truly be part of the Woodstock generation, but I...

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The father of the children thinks that they are the most wonderful and inspirational creatures on Earth, which is a nice sentiment for any parent to have toward their children, although his issues (some related to substance abuse) prompt the mother of the children to kick him to the curb early in...

Oct 23 2010 | Read Full Review of Flower Children

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