cover image The Quintland Sisters

The Quintland Sisters

Shelley Wood. Morrow, $15.99 trade paper (480p) ISBN 978-0-06-283909-1

Wood’s intriguing debut is a fictionalized version of the real events surrounding the birth of the Dionne quintuplets in 1934 rural Canada. In Corbeil, Ontario, 17-year-old Emma Trimpany accompanies a midwife to a birth at the Dionne home, because Emma’s mother has decided that midwifery is a suitable profession for Emma. Emma assists with the birth of the five impossibly tiny girls, who are kept warm in an apple crate placed in front of a wood stove. Emma works with nurses and Dr. Allan Dafoe as they care for the young girls round the clock, trying to keep them as healthy as possible. Against all odds, the quintuplets—Marie, Cecile, Emilie, Yvonne, and Annette—continue to grow and thrive as the Canadian government steps in to provide financial assistance and eventually becomes a custodian of the quintuplets. Through Emma’s journal entries and newspaper clippings, the lives of the five young girls unfold as they reside in a hospital across the road from the farmhouse where they were born and become a major tourist attraction. Wood cleverly combines fact and fiction in a fast-paced novel that will leave readers contemplating how the best intentions of government intervention can have dire, unanticipated consequences.[em] Agent: Transatlantic Literary Agency, Inc. (Mar.) [/em]