Felicia's Journey (movie tie-in)

Felicia's Journey (movie tie-in)

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by William Trevor
     
 

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Felicia, young and pregnant, steals away from a small Irish town to search for her boyfriend in the industrial sprawl of the English Midlands, where she falls in with the fat, fiftyish, unfailingly reasonable Mr. Hilditch. He is looking for a new friend to join the five other girls of his Memory Lane. But the strange, sad, terrifying tricks of chance unravel both his… See more details below

Overview

Felicia, young and pregnant, steals away from a small Irish town to search for her boyfriend in the industrial sprawl of the English Midlands, where she falls in with the fat, fiftyish, unfailingly reasonable Mr. Hilditch. He is looking for a new friend to join the five other girls of his Memory Lane. But the strange, sad, terrifying tricks of chance unravel both his and Felicia's delusions in a story more resonant than ever with Trevor's "impeccable strength and piercing profundity" (Washington Post Book World).

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Trevor, long admired for his trenchant stories and novels, his subtle humor and broad compassion, retains all those virtues in his deeply absorbing new novel and adds a degree of narrative tension he has not shown before. Felicia is a poor, plain, rather simple Irish girl made pregnant by the first boy to bed her, who then promptly disappears to England, leaving no address. When she abandons her taciturn family to look for him, her only thought is to be reunited with a lover. But she meets portly, self-delighted Mr. Hilditch, catering manager at a factory in the grimy English Midlands, who shows her unexpected kindness, even helps arrange an abortion for her; after all, he's been a good friend to so many other lost girls, hasn't he? Wary of him at first, then resigned, finally increasingly anxious as she wonders what became of his other friends, Felicia picks her numb way among psychological minefields. What happens to her and to Mr. Hilditch, in the brilliantly evoked setting of dank cafes and pubs, homeless wanderers, revivalists and bus trips to stately homes, is the stuff of nightmare; not cynically created, but one born of deep understanding and piercing truth. This is a thriller lifted to the level of high art, and it should win Trevor many new admirers. BOMC selection. (Jan.)
Library Journal
Felicia, a young Irish woman who seems doomed to a life of cooking and cleaning for her family, finds her drab existence transformed when Johnny Lysaght, a childhood friend, returns from England for a visit. After a few idyllic days, Johnny departs unexpectedly, before Felicia can ask for his address. When she discovers that she is pregnant, Felicia sets off to find him, knowing only that he works at a lawn mower factory in the Midlands. Frightened, sick, and confused by the strange accents, Felicia is befriended by a kindly older man named Hilditch, who offers her a place to sleep when her money is stolen. What she doesn't realize is that Hilditch stole the money himself, in order to force her to accept his hospitality. Trevor, whose Collected Stories was named one of the best books of 1993 by the New York Times Book Review, has written a taut psychological thriller with an unusually effective surprise ending, reminiscent of Patricia Highsmith's best work. Highly recommended. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 9/15/94.]-Edward B. St. John, Loyola Law Sch. Lib., Los Angeles
From the Publisher
"Brooding, brilliant...One of the most evocative and original books to be published in recent years...Trevor weaves a web of suspense and apprehension that is at once terrifying and believable." —The London Free Press

"In reading this rich, riveting novel, the reader basks in the glow of Trevor's compassion and the consummate integrity of his pure poetic skills." —The Globe and Mail

"Perfectly executed and chilling...Mr. Trevor is able to turn the stuff of lurid, tabloid headlines into a sad and oddly moving tale of lost opportunities and misplaced hopes." —The New York Times

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780140290219
Publisher:
Penguin Group (USA)
Publication date:
10/28/1999
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
5.06(w) x 7.72(h) x 0.42(d)
Lexile:
930L (what's this?)

Read an Excerpt

INTRODUCTION

William Trevor has long been hailed as one of the "very best writers of our era" (The Washington Post). In both his short stories and his novels, Trevor manages to shed light on the darkest corners of the human heart. It is no surprise, then, that with Felicia's Journey Trevor uses his gifts as a master storyteller—spare, lyrical prose; a tightly woven story; and finely drawn characters—to turn out this psychological thriller.

 

ABOUT WILLIAM TREVOR

William Trevor is the author of twenty-eight books, which include novels, short story collections, a play, a volume of memoir, and a children's tale. Among his many prizes are a 1996 Lannan Literary Award for Fiction. Two of his books were chosen by The New York Times as Best Books of the Year. His short stories appear regularly in The New Yorker.

 

AN INTERVIEW WITH WILLIAM TREVOR

Felicia's story is sad, but one that is all too common. Many young, pregnant Irish girls travel to England either to terminate a pregnancy or simply to escape the shame that is visited upon them by their families and communities. There was a very famous and controversial case in 1992 of a fourteen-year-old Irish girl who traveled to England to have an abortion. Did this particular story influence the writing of Felicia's Journey

 

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