The Ash Family

Molly Dektar. Simon & Schuster, $26 (352p) ISBN 978-1-5011-4486-8
In her excellent debut, Dektar probes life in a cult with a masterful hand, excavating the troubled mind of a young woman who joins what she thinks is a modern-day commune. Rather than boarding a plane for college, 19-year-old Berie leaves her home in Durham, N.C., and meets an alluring man named Bay at an Asheville, N.C., bus stop. He invites her into the Ash family fold, where he tells her she can stay “three days, or the rest of your life” on their co-op farm tucked away in the mountains. The Ash family follows a hypnotic and powerful leader called Dice, who engages in violent “actions” against developers who will harm the natural world. Dice dubs Berie “Harmony,” and she begins the hardworking life of living off the grid and rejecting everything outside the family as a “fake world.” Berie cuts off her mother and ex-boyfriend, believing that she has found a place where she belongs, but as much as she struggles for trust and acceptance—and craves intimacy with Bay—she makes mistakes and pays the price. She also learns that the family can be a threat to those who go astray. Dektar’s eloquent, often poetic prose draws readers into this disturbing, powerful novel. Agent: PJ Mark, Janklow & Nesbit Associates. (Apr.)
Reviewed on : 01/18/2019
Release date: 04/09/2019
Genre: Fiction
Book - 978-1-5011-4487-5
Downloadable Audio - 352 pages - 978-1-5082-8037-8
Compact Disc - 978-1-5082-8039-2
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