The Sign for Drowning: A Novel

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Overview

Anna has grown up haunted by her younger sister's death. In the life she constructs as a barrier against the emotional wreckage of her family tragedy, Anna settles comfortably into a career as a teacher of deaf children. But a challenge arrives?in the form of a young girl. Adrea's disarming vulnerability and obvious need for love offer Anna the possibility of reconnecting with the world around her?if she has the courage to open her heart.

In this debut novel, Rachel Stolzman has...

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2008 Hardcover New 1590305876. New. No remainder marks. Professional service from a Main Street bookstore.; 7.90 X 5 X 0.90 inches; 192 pages.

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1590305876 NEW- UNREAD! Has SMALL MARKER DOT on bottom edge. Gift quality. 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEED! FAST shipping. Pls note : a seller's feedback (esp. when proved over 1000s ... of transactions) really matters. Even small differences in feedback rating can make a BIG difference in shipping speed, description accuracy, and service. For example, we offer free delivery tracking for each order, can be reached by phone, and offer a 100% guarantee. For fast shipping to Hawaii and Alaska use expedited shipping. Read more Show Less

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1590305876 Only 1 copy left. ?Clean, unmarked copy. Hardcover, with dust jacket- In great shape! ?I can send expedited rate if you choose; otherwise it will promptly be sent via ... media rate. ?Have any questions? ?Email me; I'm happy to help! We recommend selecting Expedited Shipping to get your book as fast as possible. Read more Show Less

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Boston, MA, U.S. A 2008 Hardcover First Edition, First Printing New in New jacket Signed by Author(s) 1st Printing. 8vo-over 7?"-9?" tall. Signed and dated May 30, 2008 by ... author on title page in green fountain ink. How does a family heal after the loss of a young child? In this eloquent story, Anna is a woman haunted by the drowning of her sister when they were girls. When the family falls apart emotionally after the tragedy, young Anna tries to communicate with her dead sister by using sign language. Eventually, her interest in signing leads her to a career as a teacher for deaf children. When Adrea, one of the children in her care, attaches herself to Anna, their growing relationship becomes the catalyst for Anna to try to drop the emotional barriers that have kept her protected, but isolated, her whole life. New, unread copy opened only for signing, in new, mylar-protected dust jacket. L50. Read more Show Less

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2008 Hardcover 1st Edition New in New jacket Book. Signed by Author Fine crisp unread copy (new) First Edition First Printing. SIGNED by author, Rachel Stolzman, on title page. ... Authors first novel. Fine dust jacket in archival protective cover. Read more Show Less

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The Sign for Drowning: A Novel

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Overview

Anna has grown up haunted by her younger sister's death. In the life she constructs as a barrier against the emotional wreckage of her family tragedy, Anna settles comfortably into a career as a teacher of deaf children. But a challenge arrives—in the form of a young girl. Adrea's disarming vulnerability and obvious need for love offer Anna the possibility of reconnecting with the world around her—if she has the courage to open her heart.

In this debut novel, Rachel Stolzman has crafted a moving and poetic witness to love's power to transcend grief, pain, and the constraints of human language. The Sign for Drowning is a poignant story of loss and the unexpected occasions of grace that enable us to heal from it and grow beyond it.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“By offering her heroine’s hesitant optimism through such disarmingly honest confessions, Stolzman exhibits an authentic emotional and narrative integrity, an impressive feat for a debut novelist. Stolzman brings this lyrical sensibility to an elegiac tale of a family’s heart-stopping tragedy and hard-won redemption, in which a tarnished silence can once again be made to shine through the resonate power of love.”—Foreword Magazine

“At a time when cool, ironic fiction is too much the rage, here is a novel written straight from the heart, a tender yet fearless portrait of a loving family crippled by grief. Rachel Stolzman reminds us what kind of stories matter, and move us, the most.”—Julia Glass, author of Three Junes and The Whole World Over

“Reminiscent of Ian McEwan’s The Child in Time and Frederick Reichen’s The Odd Sea, this is a moving and important novel. Rachel Stolzman's story about a woman’s attempts to find order in the broken world she inhabits deftly captures grief and the struggle to live within its lifelong specter.”—Bret Lott, author of Jewel and A Song I Knew by Heart

“Against the themes of loss and mourning in this radiant novel are balanced those of nurturing and hope.”—Roy Hoffman, author of Chicken Dreaming Corn and Almost Family

“Rendered in spare and original prose, The Sign for Drowning is a piercing and poignant tale of loss and love. Rachel Stolzman writes from the heart and speaks to the heart. This haunting first novel is the story of unspeakable horror and extraordinary beauty.”—Patty Dann, author of The Goldfish Went on Vacation

"It's a delicately balanced novel, spare but not taciturn, emotional but not overwrought, and finally hopeful but not unnaturally cheerful."—Margaret Quamme, The Columbus Dispatch

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781590305874
  • Publisher: Shambhala Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/10/2008
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 5.36 (w) x 8.02 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

Rachel Stolzman
Rachel Stolzman received her MFA in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College. Her writing has won several awards and her poetry has appeared in numerous journals.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 6 )
Rating Distribution

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(3)

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(3)

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2013

    Impressed

    This book leaves you thinking days after you read it. It is a book that takes you places within one's spirit. As Anna is thinking about feelings, i found myself saying "Yeah...that's how i think and feel". There is tremendous depth to her writing. It is at times a difficult book given the strong feelings on delicate subjects but it is a really great read.

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  • Posted November 4, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Precise language and ability to capture her characters¿ emotional lives with insightful and telling detail.

    You might think of several reasons for learning sign language, but you probably haven¿t thought of it as a way to communicate with the dead. That¿s what 8-year-old Anna Levy tries to do after her younger sister Megan drowns on the family¿s Cape Cod vacation. <BR/><BR/>¿Nobody said Megan was beyond even silent words. I learned sign language. I wasn¿t told that death is farther than that.¿ Desperate for a way to talk to Megan and reverse the past, Anna enters a private world in which sign becomes a secret language and a metaphor for communication with memory and her own inner self. Over the years, she outgrows this idea and eventually uses her ASL as the director of a center for deaf children in New York.<BR/><BR/>Anna¿s asides on the nuances of sign language and deaf culture can be a pleasure to read, as when she notes, ¿Of course sign language can accommodate lies, but I am certain that the deaf lie less than hearing people.¿<BR/><BR/>Her portrayal of the deaf community is strong and unsentimental. But the idea of sign language or deafness as something mystical might not sit well with readers with a skeptical eye for disability appearing as anything but a physical condition. <BR/><BR/>Learned speech and lip reading take on other meanings here as well. Anna decides to take her adopted daughter Adrea to France for a six-week course in speech therapy. Although Anna, and Stolzman, understand the controversy over imposing adaptations to the hearing world on deaf children, Adrea¿s new skills are accepted by others in the community, and her efforts at speech are presented as symbols of her personal growth. <BR/><BR/>The real reward in The Sign for Drowning is Stolzman¿s precise language and her ability to capture her characters¿ emotional lives with insightful and telling detail. She explores the familiar ground of grief, family relationships, and self-doubt with sensitivity and intelligence. <BR/><BR/>-Rebecca Donnelly

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  • Posted October 23, 2008

    A New Favorite

    Well, I've just finished Rachel Stolzman's The Sign for Drowning, and am in the stunned place an outstanding story leaves you. It is a book that I couldn't put down and then read more and more slowly as I approached and tried to delay its inevitable end. It is A Favorite, absolutely, and one that I'll read again. <BR/><BR/>I mean, I want to adopt a deaf child. I want to adopt Adrea. <BR/><BR/>What I love about Stolzman's voice is its grace. She maintains a poetic facility and restraint throughout A Sign for Drowning, and is worth studying to see how it's done when it's done right. No word is wasted, and nothing sounds precious. The reader is left to experience. And what a story! It moves, it surprises, it takes you in immediately. <BR/><BR/>Rachel Stolzman is a very talented writer, and I cannot wait to see what comes next.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2008

    Exceptional book!

    In The Sign for Drowning, Rachel Stolzman weaves a story of love, loss and hope. A story that will touch readers to the depths of their soul. A story that challenges the reader to embrace places within that are hidden, places that need to be jostled, nooks which are always present in our being that leave us wondering about life's events and how these events shaped our lives and the lives of those around us.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2008

    Beautiful book!

    This is a poetic and moving book. The story of Anna's girlhood loss is deeply moving. The event of her sister's death is told in a beautifully rendered prologue. Most of the book centers on Anna and her adopted deaf daughter, Adrea and I was totally transported into their world. Their love is palatable and it is a joy to watch them move through life together. This is a book that will keep you reading and that you will remember after you put down.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 28, 2008

    The Sing for Drowning tells a soulful story

    In Rachel Stolzman's book, The Sing for Drowning the reader immediately becomes entranced by Anna's story. The author's writing is easy to read due to its poetic undertones. Stolzman captures and explores the emotions of death, motherhood and love in a way that allows the reader to embrace the story. The descriptions of Anna's feelings towards Adrea are quite remarkable. As I read the story I continually was wondering and asking myself questions about the Anna, the death of her sister, Adrea and Anna's relationship with her mother. Stolzman wrote a story that answers all the questions and leaves the reader wanting more.

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