Don Juan In Hankey, Pa

Don Juan In Hankey, Pa

3.5 4
by Gale Martin
     
 

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Peek beneath the surface of an extraordinary small-town opera company, and get to know a fabulous cast of characters: determined fl irts, a lusty singing gaucho, ingenious manipulators, a bipolar ketchup heiress, devious lovers, and some very determined ghosts. Delve into high society in Hankey,PA-a world of simmering seductions, convoluted mysteries and… See more details below

Overview

Peek beneath the surface of an extraordinary small-town opera company, and get to know a fabulous cast of characters: determined fl irts, a lusty singing gaucho, ingenious manipulators, a bipolar ketchup heiress, devious lovers, and some very determined ghosts. Delve into high society in Hankey,PA-a world of simmering seductions, convoluted mysteries and entertaining intrigues. You may laugh out loud. You may cheer for the gang of misfi ts trying to save their opera house from foreclosure by improbably staging a world-class production of Mozart's masterpiece. You may feel a tug at your heartstrings as lonely lovers look for new romance. Gale Martin's new novel, Don Juan in Hankey, PA,will delight readers everywhere.

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
In Gale's humorous backstage novel, a small-town opera company stages Don Giovanni. With revenues declining, putting on an opera anywhere these days is a difficult task--especially so in the fading Rust Belt town of Hankey, Pa. Although the opera's new artistic director collapsed with a heart attack during his job interview, he teams up with the opera guild--led by energetic divorcee Deanna Lundquist--to ambitiously plan a production of Don Giovanni, technical challenges and all. Things start looking up when they snag rising star Leandro Vasquez for the lead. Discovered singing to his cattle, he's a lusty, smoldering-hot Argentinian gaucho--someone sexy enough to bring a whole new audience to the opera. Unfortunately, he might lose himself in the role. Guild members include a retired dermatologist, a lovesick ingénue, a manic-depressive heiress to a condiment empire and an event planner who speaks to the dead. And then there are the ghosts. Packed with comic misadventures, mystery, intrigue and opera lore, the book rollicks along to a satisfying conclusion. In trying to give each point of view its due, Pushcart Prize–nominee Martin sometimes has difficulty wrangling her large cast, making it hard for readers to keep track of all the intersecting, overlapping agendas. A carefully staged farce in the lothario Leandro's dressing room, for example, fizzles; there's too much going on for too little payoff. One character, Jeannie Jacobs, overcomplicates things to little effect, and the book would be stronger without her. But the interplay among the cast is amusing; Vivian, the ketchup heiress, gets some especially good scenes. Though everyone's easy acceptance of the supernatural can strain belief--one character levitates during a séance, exciting no comment--the generally operatic setting helps it all go down better. The details involved in putting on an important opera are fascinating and true, particularly the technical discussions about staging. Cognoscenti will especially appreciate the musical references, but readers need not be opera buffs to enjoy this novel.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781935961406
Publisher:
Libertary Co.
Publication date:
11/11/2011
Pages:
310
Sales rank:
1,404,621
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

Gale Martin’s work has appeared in The Christian Science Monitor, Duck &
Herring Company’s Pocket Field Guide, and The Giggle Water Review and in
several anthologies. Recent accolades include first-place in short fiction
from the 2009 Writers-Editors International and Scratch writing
competitions and a Pushcart Prize nomination.

Gale has a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from Wilkes University. She lives in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, which serves as a rich source of inspiration for her writing. Gale is an accredited reviewer for Bachtrack, an online site featuring classical performance, and she hosts “Operatoonity.com,” a blog about
opera, at http://operatoonity.com

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