The Girl Between: A Novel

Sourcebooks, Inc.
Free sample

In this breathtaking literary novel, an innocent maid discovers the power of obsession when she is caught between two lovers in an illicit affair.

"...this well-crafted novel which explores the nature of obsessive love and the possible inspiration for The Scream." — Publishers Weekly  

Johanne Lien has grown up living a simple life with her family in Åsgårdstrand, Norway. Now that she's working as a maid for an admiral's family, Johanne thinks her carefree summers are over. She doesn't yet know that an infamous artist will lead her down a path of scorching chaos.

The admiral's daughter has become obsessed with the painter, a man years older with a dark reputation. When a forbidden affair beings, and Johanne is asked to hide more than just secrets, she must decide whether to take the risk...

Seen through the eyes of a young maid who finds herself drawn ever deeper into the intense relationship between her mistress and the painter, The Girl Between explores how one of the most famous paintings of all time may have been inspired by an intoxicating love affair.

"With careful, loving attention, Strømme transforms Munch's sketches and paintings into messages of longing." — Booklist  

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About the author

Born in Yorkshire, raised in Leeds, Tehran and Glasgow, and now living in Norway, Lisa Strømme is something of a global citizen. Over the years, she has worked as a translator, text editor and English teacher, but more recently has become a creativity coach teaching courses in the creative process and helping fellow creative types to combat common issues such as writer's block, procrastination and perfectionism. THE GIRL BETWEEN (published in the UK as THE STRAWBERRY GIRL) is her first novel.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Sourcebooks, Inc.
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Published on
Apr 11, 2017
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Pages
320
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ISBN
9781492633037
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Coming of Age
Fiction / Historical
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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In this compulsively-readable historical novel, from the author of the critically-acclaimed Two Sisters, comes the story of two young women—one in America’s Gilded Age, one in scrappy modern-day California—whose lives are linked by a single tragic afternoon in history.

1888: Elizabeth Haberlin, of the Pittsburgh Haberlins, spends every summer with her family on a beautiful lake in an exclusive club. Nestled in the Allegheny Mountains above the working class community of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, the private retreat is patronized by society’s elite. Elizabeth summers with Carnegies, Mellons, and Fricks, following the rigid etiquette of her class. But Elizabeth is blessed (cursed) with a mind of her own. Case in point: her friendship with Eugene Eggar, a Johnstown steel mill worker. And when Elizabeth discovers that the club’s poorly maintained dam is about to burst and send 20 million tons of water careening down the mountain, she risks all to warn Eugene and the townspeople in the lake’s deadly shadow.

Present day: On her eighteenth birthday, genetic information from Lee Parker’s closed adoption is unlocked. She also sees an old photograph of a genetic relative—a 19th Century woman with hair and eyes likes hers—standing in a pile of rubble from an ecological disaster next to none other than Clara Barton, the founder of the American Red Cross. Determined to identify the woman in the photo and unearth the mystery of that captured moment, Lee digs into history. Her journey takes her from California to Johnstown, Pennsylvania, from her present financial woes to her past of privilege, from the daily grind to an epic disaster. Once Lee’s heroic DNA is revealed, will she decide to forge a new fate?

Maria Anna Walburga Ignatia Mozart, affectionately called Nannerl by her family, could play the piano with an otherworldly skill from the time she was a child, when her tiny hands seemed too small to encompass a fifth. At the tender age of five, she gave her first public performance, amazing the assembled gentlemen and ladies with the beautiful music she created. But her moment of glory was cut short, for even as her father carried her around to receive their praise, her mother began laboring to bring a second child into the world. After hours of her mother’s pained cries and agonized shouts, which rang in Nannerl’s ears like a terrifying symphony, the child was born. They named him Wolfgang.

Nannerl loved him instantly. As they grew, Wolfgang and his sister became inseparable, creating a fantasy world together and playing music the likes of which no one had ever heard. They were two sides of a single person, opposite in temperament—he lighthearted and charismatic, she shy and retiring—but equal in talent. Yet it was Wolfgang who carried their father’s dreams of glory.

And as the siblings matured, Nannerl’s prodigious talent was brushed aside by her father. Instead of playing alongside her brother in the world’s great cities, she was forced to stop performing and become a provincial piano teacher to support Wolfgang’s career. Nannerl might have accepted this life in her brother’s shadow but for the appearance of a potential suitor who reawakened her passion for life, for love, for music—and who threatened to upset the delicate balance that kept the Mozart family in harmony.

Mozart’s Sister draws you into the lush palaces and salons of eighteenth-century Europe and into the fascinating life of a woman who ultimately found a way to express her own genius.
A Read with Jenna Today Show Book Club Pick!

From the New York Times bestselling author of Commonwealth and State of Wonder, comes Ann Patchett’s most powerful novel to date: a richly moving story that explores the indelible bond between two siblings, the house of their childhood, and a past that will not let them go. The Dutch House is the story of a paradise lost, a tour de force that digs deeply into questions of inheritance, love and forgiveness, of how we want to see ourselves and of who we really are.

At the end of the Second World War, Cyril Conroy combines luck and a single canny investment to begin an enormous real estate empire, propelling his family from poverty to enormous wealth. His first order of business is to buy the Dutch House, a lavish estate in the suburbs outside of Philadelphia. Meant as a surprise for his wife, the house sets in motion the undoing of everyone he loves.

The story is told by Cyril’s son Danny, as he and his older sister, the brilliantly acerbic and self-assured Maeve, are exiled from the house where they grew up by their stepmother. The two wealthy siblings are thrown back into the poverty their parents had escaped from and find that all they have to count on is one another. It is this unshakeable bond between them that both saves their lives and thwarts their futures.

Set over the course of five decades, The Dutch House is a dark fairy tale about two smart people who cannot overcome their past. Despite every outward sign of success, Danny and Maeve are only truly comfortable when they’re together. Throughout their lives they return to the well-worn story of what they’ve lost with humor and rage. But when at last they’re forced to confront the people who left them behind, the relationship between an indulged brother and his ever-protective sister is finally tested.

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