Rooks Nest

June Barraclough, Author St. Martin's Press $17.95 (330p) ISBN 978-0-312-01083-6
Set mainly in 19th century Yorkshire, Barraclough's heartfelt, wholly involving novel describes a young woman's impulsive rebellion against rigid social and moral restrictions. Raised at Hartsedge Hall by her adopted aunt Augusta after her mother's death and father's departure, Meta Moore longs to reclaim nearby Rooks Nest, the spacious house where she was born. But the estate is now rented to a Mrs. Logan and her daughter, Lavinia. As language teacher of the girls whom Aunt Augusta takes in as pupils, Lavinia fascinates impressionable Meta, who yearns for emotional and intellectual stimulation, plus the personal and professional freedom accorded to men. Unfortunately, one of Augusta's students, Barbara Stott, usurps Lavinia's attentionand Rooks Nest as wellwhen her affluent father purchases it. Distraught, Meta leaves to become a governess, then has a clandestine affair with charismatic Daniel Reiss. Baraclough vividly renders each character, particularly Meta, who defies convention when she attempts to satisfy her sexual desires outside of marriage. (September 25)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1987
Release date: 01/01/1987
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