The Borrower by Rebecca Makkai

Worlds collide when a small boy seeks beyond the boundaries of his evangelical family

WASHINGTON,  July 17, 2011 — With her first novel The Borrower (Viking, ISBN 9780670022816) Rebecca Makkai brings the world of literary aficionado’s a treasure.

Lucy Hull, a children’s librarian in Hannibal, Missouri, finds herself intrigued by Ian Hull, a young patron. He is the ten-year-old offspring of an evangelical family whose parents have enrolled him in an anti-gay program.

The Borrower by Rebecca Makki

The Borrower by Rebecca Makki

Ian, bound by the restrictions of his family, requests Lucy’s help in smuggling library books past his mother and babysitter. They develop a friendship.

When Lucy discovers Ian camping out in the library she ‘allows’ herself to be hijacked, creating the appearance that someone kidnapped the child and fled. However it is really Lucy who is being held captive by the clever and intuitive Ian.

While the story is Ian’s, Lucy has her own issues. She has fled her successful family in Chicago to live in a small town, employed in a job without prospects, after a personal brush with tragedy.

Lucy and Ian find themselves indulging in a literary adventure as they follow the road to Chicago and beyond. They encounter aid in surprising strangers and learn about the boundaries of friendship.

Those who love books and the freedom of the written word will appreciate the myriad of issues Makkai incorporates into her engaging and provocative debut.

Rebecca Makkai’s short stories have been anthologized in The Best American Short Stories 2010, 2009, and 2008. They have been published in Ploughshares, Tin House, and Threepenny Review.

Makkai lives with her family north of Chicago in Illinois.

 Read more book reviews in The Written Word at The Communities at the Washington Times.  Cecie O’Bryon England is the editor of Arts and Literature at Donne Tempo Magazine.

This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.

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Cecie O'Bryon England

Cecie O'Bryon England is a writer, reader, and artist who lives with her husband, the musician, John Henry England, and their two children, in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Contact Cecie O'Bryon England


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