The Fates Will Find Their Way: A Novel

The Fates Will Find Their Way: A Novel

by Hannah Pittard


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“A bold, wise, magical, and authentic novel about youthful infatuation and its legacy. Hannah Pittard’s beautifully confident prose is sure to make readers look back on their own teenage years with fresh wonder.”
—Vendela Vida, author of The Lovers


Already acclaimed for her short fiction—a McSweeney’s Amanda Davis Highwire Fiction Award winner whose work was selected by Salman Rushdie for inclusion in 2008 Best American Short Stories’ 100 Distinguished Stories—Hannah Pittard proves herself a master of long form fiction as well with her haunting, masterfully crafted debut novel, The Fates Will Find Their Way. A powerful and beautiful literary masterwork reminiscent of The Virgin Suicides, Pittard’s The Fates Will Find Their Way tells the unforgettable story of a teenaged girl gone missing, and the boys she grew up with who find themselves caught in the mysterious wake of her absence for the rest of their lives.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061996061
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 01/17/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 246
Sales rank: 1,172,322
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.52(h) x 0.64(d)

About the Author

Hannah Pittard's fiction has appeared in McSweeney's, the Oxford American, the Mississippi Review, BOMB, Nimrod, and StoryQuarterly, and was included in 2008 Best American Short Stories' 100 Distinguished Stories. She is the recipient of the 2006 Amanda Davis Highwire Fiction Award and a graduate of the University of Virginia's MFA program. She divides her time between Charlottesville and Chicago, where she currently teaches fiction at DePaul University.

What People are Saying About This

Christopher Tilghman

“It’s a tour de force for a young woman to follow the attitudes and changes and expectations of these several men as they grow older. ... I would recommend it to anyone.”

Jim Shepard

“THE FATES WILL FIND THEIR WAY is...about the way our imaginations can carry us from a dispiriting selfishness to a nascent empathy, and the way we continue to inflict—or even just observe—pain until that empathy arrives.”

Vendela Vida

“THE FATES WILL FIND THEIR WAY is a bold, wise, magical, and authentic novel about youthful infatuation and its legacy. Hannah Pittard’s beautifully confident prose is sure to make readers look back on their own teenage years with fresh wonder.”

Patrick Somerville

“THE FATES WILL FIND THEIR WAY is simply tremendous—a beautiful, roving, restless and relentless exploration of a crime. It would be almost too sad to bear the implications of this story if it weren’t for the warmth, hope, and kindness of its haunting prose.”

Ann Beattie

“Pittard gives the secret wink to the reader, because a story is only a story, but at the same time more than a story, and that’s why we love to invent and why we love to listen and to be taken in. At our peril.”

Customer Reviews

The Fates Will Find Their Way 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 69 reviews.
Suspensemag More than 1 year ago
This is the most unusual book I've read in awhile, being in first person plural with lots of verb tenses that would be awkward for many writers. Not for Pittard, though. The story pursues the mystery of the elusive and enigmatic Nora through what-ifs, maybes and might have beens. Possible pasts are explored and discarded, though some are held onto by the group of boys as they progress through high school into adulthood. It starts as an angst-ridden drama of newly hormonal teenagers. When one of their group, Nora, goes missing, the group considers alternate scenarios to explain to themselves, collectively, what happened to her. It's an elitist bunch of boys who permit one "public schooler" into their midst, but only on the outskirts. In spite of this, we come to appreciate them and sympathize with their difficulties. Nora disappears on Halloween, and subsequent Halloweens are never again normal events for them. One of their female classmates is raped by a big brother of another classmate and they are tenderly protective of her. Nora's younger sister, Sissy, is perhaps the mostly profoundly affected by her sister's disappearance and unresolved fate. The boys close solicitous ranks around her, too, as much as they can. The reader watches in fascination as the boys mature and become the men that their teenage years laid foundations for. And, always running through their lives, even as they marry and have children, are the questions surrounding Nora. The fantasies they form are fed by sightings over the years that may or may not have really been Nora. They create alternate lives she might have, would probably have or could have led. There are some hilarious scenes, but most are serious and give the reader plenty of fodder for speculation and thought. I hope you'll enjoy this book as much as I did. In spite of the unusual literary style, it's readable, even flowing and my interest never ever flagged. Reviewed by Kaye George, Author of "A Patchwork of Stories", for Suspense Magazine
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wanted to like it but was hard to follow and although I managed to read till the end, still not sure I know what I read!
wilsonknut on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I originally passed on The Fates Will Find Their Way by Hannah Pittard, because the summary said it was about a girl who went missing and the effect on those close to her. Then I saw that Indiespensable chose it as their current installment, so I had to read it. I¿m glad I did. This book is about so much more than a missing girl. It is about a group of people who share a defining moment in their lives. More importantly, it¿s about what they do with that moment. Like all good literature, it is about us.The book opens with a statement of facts:"Some things were certain; they were undeniable, inarguable. Nora Lindell was gone, for one thing. There was no doubt about that. For another, it was Halloween when she went missing, which only served to compound the eeriness, the mysteriousness of her disappearance."Those facts are the defining moment shared by the group of neighborhood boys who went to school with Nora- the collective ¿we¿ that narrates the book. Those opening sentences set the stage for the fantasies and conjecture that make up much of the rest of the book and the rest of the boys¿ lives.First and foremost, Hannah Pittard is a superb writer technically. As mentioned, the book is written in the collective ¿we,¿ which is no easy task to believably sustain. Though the book revolves around Nora Lindell¿s disappearance, it does not progress in the usual mystery genre fashion. It is not organized chronologically, and a solution to the mystery (in a traditional sense) does not steadily evolve. Yet, Pittard perfectly crafts every sentence and scene to manage the pace and keep the reader going.As the book progresses, the boys, who are later middle-aged men, construct possible scenarios to explain Nora¿s disappearance based on snippets of details gathered from various sources over the years. The reliability of many of the sources is questionable, but that¿s not the point. The point is the boys have a remarkable event in their youth that is open to interpretation and full of possibilities. They share it. They are in control of it. They always return to it.The boys¿ personal lives develop around the collective obsession over what happened to Nora. The reader learns how events surrounding Nora¿s disappearance have supposedly affected the boys¿ individual lives as they grow older. I say ¿supposedly¿ because the boys make the connection to Nora when explaining the unfortunate events surrounding their individual lives. One has sex with another¿s 14-year-old daughter. One has an adulterous affair. One becomes obsessed with Nora¿s younger sister, and so on. But are the boys reliable narrators? Isn¿t their judgment skewed by their obsession? After all, people do these kinds of things all the time without ever knowing a girl who went missing. In fact, the truth is the collective is not really likable, and yet, the reader can¿t help but empathize with them.Nora¿s disappearance becomes more than just a passing fantasy to the collective. It becomes something they use to give their lives meaning and purpose. And don¿t we all go to some event in our youth, in our past, some decision, and imagine, ¿what if?¿ And whether we realize it or not, we partially judge ourselves and where we are by those passing fantasies. I don¿t want to go into the boys¿ individual stories in detail because I¿m afraid it will give away too much. The careful unfolding of their lives around the core of the disappearance is partly what gives the book pace. But the collective narrator ponders the events, not just those regarding Nora but their own lives, during funerals, at dinner parties, even at the grill in the backyard:"Often it would take a wife¿s hand on the shoulder to pull us away from these reveries. ¿Honey,¿ she might say, ¿the coals. Are they ready? The kids are hungry.¿ And they would always be tender at these moments, always impossibly understanding, as though they could see our thoughts, read our fears, our worries. Sometimes, it
emcelroy on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Terrific first book by Hannah Pittard.
aimless22 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Nora Lindell disappears the Halloween of her sixteenth year. Over the next thirty years, theories about what happened to her gel into a plausible story. Told with a voice that serves as the combination of all the boys who knew Nora and her little sister, Sissy, the story shows how the unanswered questions haunt these boys as they move from teenagers to adults. In order to deal with those questions, the boys become obsessed with trying to determine what happened. A very well narrated story with interesting character developments.
Candacemom2two on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was different. The first person narration wasn't from one specific person but was clearly speaking as, or for, the group of boys that we see throughout the story. I can't say I loved that perspective but it wasn't bad either.This story is kind of about what could have happened. We see that Nora could have been kidnapped, she could have ran away, she could have done this or that. And we see what may have happened if that had, in fact, happened. I hated not knowing. It drove me nuts! I wanted to know where this girl disappeared to! Each time I read what may have happened I was convinced that that's what happened. Until I read the next one. It was frustrating for me!It was interesting seeing how each person lived their life. The ridiculous things that boys do, that kids do, even that adults do when faced with fear, uncertainty, lust and pretty much any feeling. I'm not sure how I really felt about this book. There were parts that were pretty interesting, but other things that bugged me.I think I'll give it 3/5 stars though, as it was well wrote and the lives were pretty interesting.
PattyLouise on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Fates Will Find Their Way By Hannah PittardThe premise of this book¿the heart of this book is the disappearance of Nora Lindell. An ordinary neighborhood, a Halloween Party and Nora is never seen or heard from again.The most amazing aspect of this book is that we do not find out what happens to Nora.The story unfolds from the eyes of an unknown narrator. This narrator is one of the neighborhood boys and the entire telling of this story is from the view of this boy who seems to be telling the story from a ¿we¿ perspective. This narrator speaks for all of the boys in the neighborhood as they are boys and as they grow into men¿men with wives, babies and families of their own. There are many and varied theories about what happened to Nora Lindell and all of them are believable. I wanted to believe all of them except for the one with the saddest outcome. Each concept was presented in an orderly believable manner. I was caught up in each idea¿I found myself saying to myself¿¿Yes, I can see that happening or of course, of course¿that is what happened¿. But again we never truly know.Hannah Pittard has written a truly beautiful and mesmerizing book. I was caught up in adolescent anxiety and school and parties with neighbors and college and aging and pretty much life in general. The realization for the narrator that this is what life is¿being young and then being old and all the life stuff in between. It truly is a lovely lovely book.
iubookgirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Fates Will Find Their Way charts the lives of those left behind after the disappearance of a neighborhood girl, Nora Lindell. Nora was sixteen when she went missing, and the mystery is never solved. The boys she went to school with grow into men, but Nora and her possible fate always lurks in their minds. I was surprised and yet not at all surprised by the draw she continues to have on these men. Through the voice of an unknown male narrator, Hannah Pittard shares their speculations on Nora¿s possible endings and the fates of all those who knew her. The narrative bounces back and forth between childhood memories and adulthood, and it works perfectly.What I found amazing about The Fates Will Find Their Way was Pittard¿s ability to convey the hold Nora and her family held over these boys/men at the same time showing how their lives all unfold in a very normal, suburban way. Despite their fascination and continued reflection on Nora, she really has very little effect on their own fates. Even Nora¿s younger sister, Sissy, is somehow able to construct a normal life for herself.I was interested in reading The Fates Will Find Their Way because the story seemed reminiscent in theme and style to The Virgin Suicides, a book I read years ago and enjoyed a great deal. While it is similar, Pittard¿s writing stands fully on its own. I was fascinated by this book and sped through it on Christmas Eve day. The Fates Will Find Their Way is a truly wonderful book. I highly recommend you read it as soon as possible.
lostbooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I didn't like this book at all, and I don't understand all the hype about it. The story never resolves itself, and maybe that was the point, but I didn't like that. I found the teenage boys unbelievable (knowing a few myself), and the major prank in the book absolutely ridiculous. I wonder why this female author thought she could write from the viewpoint of these guys, because I sure don't know anyone like them, and I don't think she pulled it off. I did put the time in to read the entire book, though now that I'm done, I wish I hadn't wasted my time with it.
highvoltagegrrl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
An interesting point of view is the biggest draw of the novel. It features boys reminiscing over a missing girl, a few various storylines of her possible life are invented and we get to follow along with what might have been. We watch from the sidelines and see how the story of a missing girl affects her schoolmates and her sister.The boys in her life seem unable to get past the mystery surrounding Nora which is saddening in multiple ways. We hear their thoughts on the type of person she was and what they think she could be, but their own lives play only a small part of the story, only interesting when they are winding their lives through hers. While there is no major climax or mystery that will be solved, the writing fills in the blanks with imaginary tales and make you wonder about those whose lives have crossed with your own.
Jennifyr on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Fates Will Find Their Way is a dreamy, addictive read. The premise has been compared to, and is a lot like, The Virgin Suicides, but the writing is different, and the span of story telling is from childhood into adulthood. The Fates is a quick, easy read, and a story you will have a hard time putting down. The writing is beautiful and intriguing, and if you go in expecting the quality of The Virgin Suicides after reading the reviews, you won't be disappointed. The breaks into the what-ifs of the missing girl, Nora Lindell, are perfect, and you find yourself rooting for the best case scenario along with these boys. Definitely one of the best books of the year, even if it is only March.
alexann on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Nora Lindell goes missing on Halloween, the year she's sixteen. The boys in her class become obsessed with her, and dream up many different scenarios explaining her disappearance. As they grow older, and become men with families, they continue to wonder what happened to Norah. Is she still alive? Did they catch a glimpse of her in TV coverage of unrest in Africa? Or did she just die that first night she was gone?Had it been told differently this could have been a fascinating story. The author chose, however, to write from the point of view of the entire group of boys / men. It's very odd, and for me, quite distancing. Here's a sample: "But at night we lay awake, the shades drawn, our eyes wide open, the breath of our families a constant hum beside us. We lay awake and wondered all over again about Nora..."Much of the book is the boys' made-up scenarios of what might have happened to Nora, what life might be like for her now--if she ran away to the southwest where she met an older Mexican man who took her in, and cared for her and the twins she gave birth to. These passages are fascinating; and then we remember it's only the boys' conjecture. The writing in these passages is lovely--full of emotion, and the feel of the landscape.It's easy to imagine other readers enjoying this little book, but it wasn't pleasant reading for me.
Sararush on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The fates will find a way by Hannah Pittard is mostly about the aftermath of a small community after a young girl Nora simply vanishes. Told in what's being called `percussive voice", the author forces you into the perspectives of a group of boys who come of age while becoming more and more obsessed with the mystery. The most striking thing about this short novel is how different it is then any other that you are likely to pick up. More than half the novel is comprised of imaginary scenarios about what could have happened to Nora. It's a lot of "maybe's" and "let's say". Even though certain elements of these stories come to fruition, most of it is narrative guess work. And we are never given a definitive answer about what happened to this girl. If Pittard had taken a stand in one way or another, this technique may have been more effective. As it's written, I have a hard time reconciling what happened because not much actually did. Although some will enjoy sleuthing through the possibilities, the lack of answers will frustrate others.
Berly on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
3.0 This is the story of a girl who disappears at age 16 in two parts. One follows her hypothetical death/life and the other the lives of the boys in her high school as they continue grow up into men. I actually enjoyed the chapters about the missing girl far more than those of the boys. Interesting but depressing.
readingdate on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Fates Will Find Their Way is Hannah Pittard¿s debut novel. The novel is unique in many ways. The female author writes from the male perspective, and has written the book in first person plural. The narrator¿s voice could be of any or all of the boys collectively. The story is told in a non-linear fashion and follows the narrator¿s through their teenage years through their adulthood when they have teenagers of their own. The story is also unusual in the fact that the book starts out about a girl who goes missing on Halloween, however we never find out what happens to her.The story is told by a group of boys who are obsessed with the missing girl Nora, and spend time theorizing on what may have happened to her. They imagine her abduction, and fill in the details such as the car, or airport, or city she may have ended up in. Nora has a younger sister, Sissy, who they are just as fascinated with as Nora.In addition to the Nora story, we get to know the group of boys as they grow up. We see them at their pool parties, growing up with wives and children, and seeing their heartache and tragedy in their lives.I was curious to find out what happened to Nora, but ultimately this is not what the book is about. The boys did not really want to find out either, and would rather keep her memory and her imagined fate to themselves.This is a fascinating, compelling, and sometimes disturbing read about boys growing up and wanting to hold on to their boyhood as long as they can. It is uniquely told, nostalgic and intelligent. Recommended for those looking for a break from the YA or paranormal world. Looking forward to seeing what this author comes up with next.
ForeignCircus on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The central figure in this book, 16 year old Nora Liddell, never actually appears other than in the memories and speculations of the boys who were her friends. As they grow up and marry and have children of their own, they are always haunted by the memory of perfect Nora- she looms large over their psyches despite her long absence. As they debate whether or not she ran away or was abducted, whether she hopped a plane to AZ or was buried in a shallow grave it the woods, some part of them is always stuck in childhood in that focus on Nora and her family.This is a wonderfully written book- truly original and an excellent read. Though at the beginning, I kept hoping to get some clarity on what actually happened to Nora, by the end it was clear that knowledge was unnecessary. Though Nora and her sister are in many ways the central chracters in this drama, it is the reactions of the boys around them that are the focus of this engaging novel. Highly recommended!
writestuff on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Our only limitation was our imagination, and that school year ¿ and every school year after ¿ our imaginations seemed to grow, to outdo what we¿d ever believed possible. We outran our wildest fantasies. That is, until Nora Lindell went missing, and the only fantasy we could ever conjure suddenly involved her or some aspect of her, like her little sister. ¿ from The Fates Will Find Their Way, page 50 -In a small, suburban American town, life goes on ¿ friendships, gossip, failing marriages, sibling rivalries, urban myths, births and deaths. Nora Lindell, a sixteen year old who has captured the imagination of the boys in town, disappears one Halloween night. Her disappearance informs the lives of not only the boys who have fantasized about her, but her younger sister who is left to fill the void. As the years unspool, all the characters grow up, marrying (or not), finding their place in life ¿ except for Nora, whose life is only left to be imagined.The Fates Will Find Their Way explores the idea of self-realization. It examines the inevitability of life and its predictable and unpredictable path as we move from childhood innocence to cynical adulthood.Certain outcomes are unavoidable, invariable, absolutely unaffectable, and yet completely unpredictable. Certain outcomes are that way. But maybe not Nora¿s. Maybe she was the only one who escaped; who had the chance to become something not completely inevitable. Maybe. Or maybe she died when she was sixteen years old in a snowstorm that overtook her, in a foreign grouping of trees, close to the water, a mere two counties over. ¿ from The Fates Will Find Their Way, page 142 -Hannah Pittard creates characters with fully realized lives in just over 200 pages. Narrated in the collective voices of the boys who knew Nora, the novel is a meditation on growing up, and the future in front of us which gradually warps into the present infused by our past. Pittard asks the tough questions in this debut novel: How does our past shape our future? Do we ever really know the people around us? Are we the architects of our lives, or does fate play a larger role?Pittard captures what might have been through the disappearance of Nora ¿ has Nora escaped a future of inevitability, or has she missed the small unexpected joys which infuse our lives?It¿s hard not to want to let out a full-on yell, something primal and guttural, as if an untamed sound alone could describe the simple relief that we are here, that we are alive. Standing at the edge of the ocean, watching a sinking ship in a storm, we wipe our brow and wonder, in disbelief, at our own good fortune. ¿ from The Fates Will Find Their Way, page 188 -The Fates Will Find Their Way is a dreamy novel of half-truths and concealed motivations. Nothing is as it seems. There are no easy answers to the fate of Nora¿or for that matter, the fate of her sister. But, the novel is less about the missing girl than about those who are left behind. Pittard leaves the reader with a shadowy tale that has no clear ending ¿ and perhaps this is what makes the book so compelling. Readers will bring their own perceptions, biases, and philosophies to this slim novel¿making this a book which will stimulate discussion.Highly literary with a deep psychological edge, The Fates Will Find Their Way will appeal to readers who like haunting, metaphorical stories which examine the essence of what it means to be human.Recommended.
Jthierer on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book sets out to create a picture of what happens to the people left behind when a teenage girl disappears. Unlike most books, however, the immediate family is on the periphery of this story, which focuses instead on the boys who were her classmates. This allows us to both have distance from the tragedy itself while still seeing the ripples tragedy can create in an insular neighborhood. Recommended for book clubs (especially since its short length makes it a quick read.)
suetu on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Let the readers find their way How often, in this day and age, does an author find a completely original way to tell a story? Avid reader that I am, I¿ll tell you: Not very often. And how often, after reading a novel in a single sitting, do write an immediate review? Not very often. And how often does a debut novel¿any novel¿affect me this powerfully? Not very often. This is my immediate reaction to The Fates Will Find Their Way by Hannah Pittard. It is, and is not, the story of the disappearance of sixteen-year-old Nora Lindell. More accurately, it is the story of the vacuum left in Nora¿s wake, and of how that vacuum is filled. The tale is told in reflection by the men who were the neighborhood boys that Nora left behind, and it is told entirely in the first person plural. If you¿re wondering how that sounds, it sounds like this: ¿It seemed we had all finally stopped looking for her, asking about her. It was a sickness, a leftover from a youth too long protracted. Of course we still thought about her. Late at night, lying awake, especially in early autumn, when we could fall asleep for a few weeks with the bedroom windows open, the curtains pulled halfway, a breeze coming in and the occasional stray dry leaf, we still allowed ourselves the vague and unfair comparisons between what our wives were and what she might have been. At least we were able to acknowledge the futility of the fantasies, even if we still couldn¿t control them.¿ This novel is a collection of those boys¿ fantasies, the fleshed out conjectures based upon shreds of evidence presented by impeachable sources. And, in the sharing of these speculative outcomes for Nora Lindell, we learn the true outcomes of the close-knit group that she left behind¿from the immediate aftermath of her disappearance, through the decades that follow. And we see how Nora¿s absence shaped each of their lives. Nora¿s friends are a true community, kids who grew up together and stayed local. They have a shared history. And time has transmuted Nora Lindell¿s fate from mystery to mythology. Their tale is told in a collective voice, and yet, individuals stand out. Paul Epstein, Jack Boyd, Winston Rutherford, Chuck Goodhue, Stu Zblowski, Drew Price, Marty Metcalfe, Trey Stephens, and Danny Hatchet all have their own stories that unfold along with their theories of what happened to Nora. Even with the unusual voice, I found this book fully emotionally engaging. Reading it, I couldn¿t help but reflect on my own past, my relationships, stories I¿ve heard, and so forth. This novel is plot-driven, literary, experimental, spare, and absolutely beautiful. One week into the new year, I¿m confident that I¿ve just read one of the top books of 2011.
msjessicamae on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I just realized that I never posted my review of The Fates Will Find Their Way. I finished it weeks ago and wrote my review immediately but somehow (I blame it on the fact that I started a new job so my routines are all out of whack) it never made it to posting. It was a great book and I actually want to go back and read it again after rereading my review because I remember different things I loved about it. The Fates Will Find Their Way is about the disappearance of a girl named Nora and how it affects a group of boys who knew her, as well as their lives years later. They are so tied to what may or may not have happened to Nora that they imagine different scenarios which could have happened on the night Nora went missing. All the scenarios are so real you forget you are reading about their hopes and fears.The story itself is so tragically real. It is what I think would happen to the friends of a teen who goes missing. They would imagine the worst case scenario but also imagine the things she could be doing if she were alive after that night. The boys ponder various stories which always lead to the loss of her and they allow their hope to leave them grasping at straws. They live for the unknown, for the possibility that she may be alive and happy or even alive and regretting leaving (if she left by choice).This book was like an adult, male version of a Judy Blume story. If you took Are You There God, It¿s Me Margaret and extended it through the adult years and then made it about boys instead of Margaret you would have The Fates Will Find Their Way. This is a story that makes you look at what you are focused on in your own life as you read about what the boys begin to learn about themselves.I loved the entire story but something more specific that I can¿t not mention is that I LOVED the ever-present phone tree.
bookmagic on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I wasn't sure I was going to like this book, but I choose it from the Amazon Vine Program to see what all the hype was about. It was much different from the usual missing teen novel. The story isn't so much about Nora, as it is about the stories and friendships of the boys that knew her. As they grow older, get married and have children, they still talk about Nora and the various information that they hear. She is seen at an airport, suspected living in New Mexico with two children. She is seen on tv during a story about bombings in India. The myth of Nora never leaves their minds.I thought this was extremely well-written, moving between characters and their versions of the mythology. Some may not like it because their is no answer to what happened to Nora Lindell, the reader has to use their imaginations as do the boys. But I liked it and thought it was very original. I look forward to more from this author. Highly rating 4.5/5
LiterateHousewife on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Nora Lindell, a teenager girl, goes missing from a small East Coast town. The mystery of her disappearance isn't solved. This premise, while interesting, is by no means new or unusual, unless written by Hannah Pittard. Pittard takes this concept and spins it on its ear in The Fates Will Find Their Way by choosing a group of boys to narrate the story. A story about the power of common myth while growing up and growing older.It has been a long time since I've been possessed to stop reading, scour the house for a writing utensil and start underlying and marking up the book. The Fates Will Find Their Way made me do just that. I couldn't not mark it up. Pittard's writing is gorgeous and consuming. Here are a couple of examples from my favorite passages:The Mexican loved them all. It was from him that the girls would learn about love. Not that there wasn't a tenderness to Nora. There was. A great deal of tenderness, but it was the tenderness of a hospice nurse-of one committed to caring but too familiar with pain and parting to ever truly or fully invest._______If only we'd known. But we didn't know. We never know. No matter how many times we revisit that party or any other. The fact is, until it happened, until Trey changed how we viewed him, how we viewed and view ourselves-as men, as fathers, as friends and husbands-we could never know enough to change the outcome. Not his. Not ours. Certain outcomes are unavoidable, invariable, absolutely unaffectable, and yet completely unpredictable. Certain outcomes are that way.There is so much I'd love to say about this book. I would love the opportunity to discuss it with other people. However, for the sake if those who've not read it, I can't. Any detail, no matter how small, feels like a spoiler. Something known about the novel ahead of time would spoil the joy of discovering it on one's own.By the time I finished The Fates Will Find Their Way, I was in love with Hannah Pittard's writing and storytelling. I don't know how else to describe the experience than to say that I set the book down in the end with complete satisfaction. I thanked my lucky stars for requesting it. It was a pure delight.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The_Book_Wheel_Blog More than 1 year ago
I love when I pick up a book and just fall right into it. I was a little wary when I picked up The Fates Will Find Their Way because the Goodreads rating is only so-so, and I try not to read anything that has less than a 3.5 star rating. But this one, with its little 3.18, was fantastic. If you’re a fan of The Lovely Bones and The Virgin Suicides, then you will love this book. The basic premise is this: At 17, a well-like girl named Nora Lindell went missing. Over the next couple of decades, a group of boys in her class concoct various stories about what may have happened to her. In some, she’s married and happy, and in others she’s a long-time dead. But in all of them, the details are vivid and the longing palpable. Even as they grow up, get married, and have kids, the boys from Nora’s childhood can’t seem to let her go. What I love about this book is that it flows so well. I wouldn’t say that it’s stream-of-conciousness writing but it is definitely less structured. What is so amazing about it is that the imagination and intricate tales that the boys weave for Nora’s life are entirely plausible. I won’t give away the ending, but I will say that I am still thinking about book. Nothing about it is shocking or loud, but its subtle and intricate details propel the book into the realm of palpability. And that, my friends, makes for a good read.
DudleyS More than 1 year ago
This story revolves around the obsessive thoughts of a group of high school boys surrounding the disappearance of their sixteen year old classmate Nora. The boys imagine several scenarios over what happened to Nora that Halloween night and the possibilities grow as they age into their forties. The premise of the story is intriguing as is the weaving of the events of their lives as the boys grow into men. What holds them together is this common event in their lives. Here's where the book fell terribly short for me. The entire book is written as a narrative by one of the guys. You never know his name. A narrative approach may have worked, however the author had so many characters going on over the span of 20+ years, so there was essentially no character development that went deeper than surface level. This made it impossible for me to connect with and care about any of them. Also, over this 20+ years, why is this group of guys still so incredibly pre-occupied with Nora's dissapearance. It would be understandable for their to be lingering thoughts, but obsession? Another area of difficulty was that the author seemed to find a way to throw in nearly every tragic event possible, rape, molestation, the early death of a parent, terroist bombing, etc. Instead of being a book about the collective musings over the missing Nora, it was a bombardement of the worst of society. I enjoyed the concept of the book, but not the execution.