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The floor of the sky
Pamela Carter Joern
Adult Fiction JOERN

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Toby Jenkins, now 72, has been living all her life in the same ornate Sears, Roebuck farmhouse in the Nebraska Sandhills her father bought for her mother back in 1920. For now, Toby aims to stay there with her cranky self-righteous sister, Gertie, despite the local weasel banker's pressure to sell. Toby is widowed, resolute and land-scarred; a string of family deaths, tragedies and abandonments have left Toby and Gertie with no one to pass the place on to. Then Toby's 16-year-old pregnant granddaughter, Lila, arrives from Minneapolis. At first the unloved, metal-studded Lila, the child of Toby's adoptive daughter, a bitter airline stewardess, is surly and ungrateful, but eventually her curiosity about country rituals and her grandmother's life leads her to the family cemetery and to archives harboring long-buried family secrets. Playwright Joern's characters are as stern as the land, and the world of her debut novel is sturdy and memorable. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Lila is a pregnant teenager spending the summer at her grandmother Toby's Nebraska ranch. Toby is trying to save her ranch from foreclosure while dealing with her sanctimonious older sister Gertie, whose Alzheimer's-afflicted husband has been put into a nursing home. The events of the summer bring out long-buried family secrets, with every member facing significant challenges before achieving resolution. First novelist Joern is particularly skilled at depicting contemporary small-town life and the issues rural communities face: the difficulty small farmers and ranchers have staying afloat financially and the decision of younger generations either to leave for urban areas or to endure directionless lives. She packs a lot of story into 250 pages, though except for the names of four generations of an extended family, the book doesn't feel crowded. Essential for rural and regional public libraries.-Christine DeZelar-Tiedman, Univ. of Minnesota Libs., Minneapolis (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Toby Jenkins
Age: 72
On the verge of losing her family's ranch; her granddaughter is staying with her for the summer.

Gertie Jenkins
Lives with her younger sister, Toby, in their family's ranch; cranky; self-righteous; bitter; her husband is in a home suffering from Alzheimer's.

Age: 16
Toby's granddaughter; a city girl; searching for her family's history and a place to belong.

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