The Peppered Moth
Harcourt, 2001 - Fiction - 369 pages
Bessie Bawtry is a young girl living in the early 1900s in Breaseborough, a mining town in South Yorkshire, England. Unusually gifted, she longs to escape a life burdened by unquestioned tradition. She studies patiently, dreaming of the day when she will take the entrance exam for Cambridge and be able to leave her narrow world. A generation later, Bessie's daughter Chrissie feels a similar impulse to expand her horizons, which she in turn passes on to her own daughter.
Nearly a century later, Bessie's granddaughter, Faro Gaulden, finds herself listening to a lecture on genetics and biological determinism. She has returned to Breaseborough and wonders at the families who remained in the humble little town where Bessie grew up. Confronted with what would have been her life had her grandmother stayed, she finds herself faced with difficult questions. Is she really so different from the plain South Yorkshire locals? As she soon learns, the past has a way of reasserting itself-not unlike the peppered moth that was once thought to be nearing extinction but is now enjoying a sudden unexplained resurgence.
"The Peppered Moth" is a brilliantly conceived novel, full of irony, sadness, and humor.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - suesbooks - LibraryThing
The writing was much better than the content, but even that aspect got tiring with the numerous repetitions. The characters of the 4 generations were somewhat interesting, but I did not care much for ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - IonaS - LibraryThing
I found this book too drab and unexciting to be able to get into. I never got to the moth bit and hardly know what the book is really about though it seems to tell the tale of a little girl called ... Read full review
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able already asked Auntie Barron beginning Bessie Bawtry Bessie's better boys Breaseborough called Chrissie clear Cotterhall course Cudworth dark daughter dead death Dora Dr Hawthorn earth Ellen expected eyes face Faro father feel felt Gaulden girl glass hand happy hard head hoped interest Italy kind knew light listened live look managed married Miss Heald mother moved never Nick Nick Gaulden night once pass past perhaps play ring Road Robert Rose round says seemed seen South Yorkshire speak stay Steve story sure taken talk tell thing thought told took tried turn waiting walk waste watch woman women wonder Yorkshire young