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Gardenias
Faith Sullivan
Adult Fiction SULLIVA

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Abandoning Depression-ravaged Minnesota and the alcoholic husband who drank away the family savings, Arlene Erhardt moves to California in early 1942 in search of a new life, bringing along her sister Betty and daughter Lark, the too-precocious narrator of this tale of independence, loyalty, hope and crushed dreams. The Erhardts land in a San Diego housing project, where Lark is left alone to sort out her new world while Betty and Arlene work. Though Lark makes a less than credible nine-year old (her habit of reading a dictionary notwithstanding), she endears herself to the reader through her innocence and curiosity. (Sept.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

From Library Journal:

Seventeen years ago, Sullivan's novel The Cape Ann introduced readers to six-year-old Lark Ernhardt and the town of Harvester, MN. In this follow-up novel, nine-year-old Lark, her newly separated mother, and Aunt Betty have moved to California to forge a new life. Set during World War II, the story follows the family and its new friends as they struggle to reconcile their pasts and the present. Lark is particularly challenged by her relationship with Shirley, a young girl who, while she fails to befriend Lark, is welcomed into their home by Aunt Betty. Although Sullivan writes competently, she fails to engage the reader fully. It seems that the author just doesn't have the same feel for wartime California as she does for Harvester, or perhaps the bleakness of wartime fails to warm Gardenias. Still, the novel is sure to be in demand in collections that feature Sullivan's previous works.-Caroline M. Hallsworth, City of Greater Sudbury, Ont. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Lark Ann Erhardt
girl
Age: 9
Joins her mother and aunt and migrates to California to start life over.

Arlene Erhardt
Female
Mother
Lark's mother; left her housband after he gambled away their dream house money; hopes to find work in a war plant.

Betty
Female
Lark's aunt ;travels to California to start life over.



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