The Gypsy Moth Summer

Julia Fierro. St. Martin’s, $26.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-250-08751-5
Something is rotten in the heart of Avalon Island, home to Grudder Aviation, where the devastation wrought by the 1992 invasion of gypsy moths underscores the tension boiling to the surface of the islanders’ lives. Intermingled with scientific data about gypsy moths, Fierro’s (Cutting Teeth) riveting second novel unfolds through the eyes of multiple generations. Social doyenne Veronica is struggling to hide her husband’s dementia and protect his domineering image as “The Colonel” (president of Grudder Aviation) while keeping her terminal cancer and his long-time abuse of her a secret. Maddie, her granddaughter, traverses the slippery terrain of adolescence with its hormones and fearsome popularity entanglements. Dom, Maddie’s younger brother, is by turns ashamed and bewildered by his homosexuality. Leslie, renegade adult daughter of a rival prominent family, returns to the island on a mission to bring Grudder down, while her husband, Jules, a Harvard-educated African American, tries to navigate the challenge of bringing up his teenage son, Brooks, and four-year-old daughter, Eva, in the lily-white enclave of the Avalon upper crust. Can the budding romance between Brooks and Maddie survive against the backdrop of racism, class rivalries, changing social mores, and Leslie’s desperation for revenge? That question is poignantly answered in a powerful story showcasing a dizzying spectrum of relationships from the deeply destructive to the supportive and loving. (June)
Reviewed on: 04/17/2017
Release date: 06/06/2017
Compact Disc - 978-1-5414-1307-8
MP3 CD - 978-1-5414-6307-3
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