The Beginners by Rebecca Wolff

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Synopsis

Theo and Raquel Motherwell are the only newcomers to the sleepy town of Wick in fifteen-year-old Ginger Pritt’s memory. Hampered by a lingering innocence while her best friend, Cherry, grows more and more embroiled with boys, Ginger is instantly attracted to the worldliness of this dashing couple. But as Ginger’s keen imagination takes up the seductive mystery of their past, she is only left with more questions. Who—or what—exactly, are the Motherwells? And what is it they want with her? Both a lyrical coming-of-age story and a spine-tingling tale of ghostly menace, The Beginners introduces Rebecca Wolff as an exciting new talent in fiction.
 

About Rebecca Wolff

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Rebecca Wolff is the editor of Fence and the author of Manderley, Figment and Continuum. She lives in Athens, New York, with her family and is a Fellow of the New York State Writers Institute.
 
Published June 30, 2011 by Riverhead. 300 pages
Genres: Horror, Literature & Fiction, Romance. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Beginners

Kirkus Reviews

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Ginger’s growing obsession with the Motherwells, to the point that she spends nights in their home, strains credibility both because of the age differential and Raquel’s pomposity—when she’s not outright condescending toward Ginger, she’s spouting pedantically about parents, sex and Wick’s witchy...

Jun 30 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Publishers Weekly

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The Motherwells, Raquel and Theo, say they are in town to research the town's past—witch trials, the legend of a town sunk beneath the reservoir—and they allow Ginger and Cherry, but mostly Ginger, into their strange cohort and a party to their sometimes alarming schemes.

Feb 14 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Kirkus Reviews

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Truly, though, I started writing and publishing poems as a teenager, but I've always been a lover of the novel.

Jun 28 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Book Reporter

Ghosts of the dead, of ideas and possibilities float across the page as Ginger confronts the mysteries of her mind, of her town and of her body with the dangerous Motherwells as catalyst.

Jul 03 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Los Angeles Times

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Sometimes the issue is voice: It's hard to imagine a teenager, no matter how intelligent, thinking as Ginger does, "A child does not perceive herself as such — not in the way that adults grow ever more concerned with their status, their chronos, as it shows itself ever more clearly on their bodie...

Jul 10 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Review (Barnes & Noble)

At the beginning of the novel, Ginger wonders whether evil is a personal choice or whether it is "a floating contingency of being, like a hat that lands on one’s head";

Jun 30 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Oprah.com

More Books We Love The complete 2011 summer reading list Thrills, chills and completely unputdownable mysteries Please note that Harpo Productions, Inc., OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, Discovery Communications LLC and their affiliated companies and entities ...

Jun 28 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Book Forum

But one never feels as enchanted as the young Ginger, since Wolff almost methodically differentiates between Ginger's "capability" to believe, and more intellectual definitions of metaphysical terminology.

Jun 30 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Fiction Writers Review

Blog (339) Anne Stameshkin (299) Celeste Ng (264) writers on writing (255) novel (220) Review (176) short stories (171) debut novel (157) Book of the Week (155) craft (134) Lee Thomas (117) lit and tech (111) recommended reading (109) FWR news (103) publishing (102) debut story collection (100) i...

Nov 03 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Fiction Writers Review

In poet Rebecca Wolff’s first novel, The Beginners (Riverhead, 2011), Ginger Pritt is a bookish fifteen-year-old stuck in the small New England town of Wick.

Nov 03 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

The Paris Review

Thanks to a three-day flu I read Rebecca Wolff’s witchy coming-of-age novel The Beginners, then stayed up late reading the rest of Jennifer Egan’s juggernaut A Visit From the Goon Squad (it lives up to the New Yorker excerpts), then started rereading Geoff Dyer’s deeply charming book on photograp...

Feb 11 2013 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

The Paris Review

In the embarrassing oversights department, I had been meaning and meaning to read the novelist Jean-Philippe Toussaint.

Jul 01 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Chronogram

Elsewhere, crows perched on a cupola appear “wicked, in their hunched postures of silhouetted predation.” Sky assumes “a telling quietude” as “a whitewash of clouds obscured the sun and cast a flat, smooth, cooler light.” Emboldened by a risk-taking poet’s eye, scenes and circumstances resonate l...

Nov 01 2011 | Read Full Review of The Beginners

Reader Rating for The Beginners
29%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 23 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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