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To her irresistible first novel Rita Dove brings the same lyricism and bravura command of imagery that won her the 1987 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry as she deftly evokes the tensions and longings that confront any woman--black or white--trying to find a place in the world. In the early 1970s Virginia King, a young black actress whose avant-garde theater troupe has recently fallen apart, returns to her industrial Midwestern hometown as artist-in-residence teaching puppetry to schoolchildren. Coming home also means coming to terms with unsettling memories and with disturbing truths about her secretive family.
"The story is gentle...yet its strength is [Dove's] prose, her ability to describe and suggest...The book deals sparingly but effectively with the issue of race [and] presents the richness of a life and its connections to family and friends, culture, place, seasons and self."--The New York Times Book Review