The Swan Gondola: A Novel

The Swan Gondola: A Novel

by Timothy Schaffert
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Overview

The Swan Gondola: A Novel by Timothy Schaffert

A lush and thrilling romantic fable about two lovers set against the scandalous burlesques, midnight séances, and aerial ballets of the 1898 Omaha World’s Fair.

On the eve of the 1898 Omaha World’s Fair, Ferret Skerritt, ventriloquist by trade, con man by birth, isn’t quite sure how it will change him or his city. Omaha still has the marks of a filthy Wild West town, even as it attempts to achieve the grandeur and respectability of nearby Chicago. But when he crosses paths with the beautiful and enigmatic Cecily, his whole purpose shifts and the fair becomes the backdrop to their love affair.

One of a traveling troupe of actors that has descended on the city, Cecily works in the Midway’s Chamber of Horrors, where she loses her head hourly on a guillotine playing Marie Antoinette. And after closing, she rushes off, clinging protectively to a mysterious carpetbag, never giving Ferret a second glance. But a moonlit ride on the swan gondola, a boat on the lagoon of the New White City, changes everything, and the fair’s magic begins to take its effect.

From the critically acclaimed author of The Coffins of Little Hope, The Swan Gondola is a transporting read, reminiscent of Water for Elephants or The Night Circus.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781594486098
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/06/2014
Pages: 464
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.60(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author


Timothy Schaffert grew up on a farm in Nebraska and now lives in Omaha. He is the author of four previous critically acclaimed novels, which have been among Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selections, Indie Next Picks, and New York Times Editor’s Choices. Schaffert teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

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The Swan Gondola: A Novel 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
TonyaTells More than 1 year ago
A lush and thrilling romantic fable about two lovers set against the scandalous burlesques, midnight séances, and aerial ballets of the 1898 Omaha World’s Fair. On the eve of the 1898 Omaha World’s Fair, Ferret Skerritt, ventriloquist by trade, con man by birth, isn’t quite sure how it will change him or his city. Omaha still has the marks of a filthy Wild West town, even as it attempts to achieve the grandeur and respectability of nearby Chicago. But when he crosses paths with the beautiful and enigmatic Cecily, his whole purpose shifts and the fair becomes the backdrop to their love affair. One of a traveling troupe of actors that has descended on the city, Cecily works in the Midway’s Chamber of Horrors, where she loses her head hourly on a guillotine playing Marie Antoinette. And after closing, she rushes off, clinging protectively to a mysterious carpetbag, never giving Ferret a second glance. But a moonlit ride on the swan gondola, a boat on the lagoon of the New White City, changes everything, and the fair’s magic begins to take its effect. From the critically acclaimed author of The Coffins of Little Hope, The Swan Gondola is a transporting read, reminiscent of Water for Elephants or The Night Circus. -- My thoughts: I loved EVERY minute of this book. I stopped and reread sentences and lines, eager for each word, savoring it because it ended way too fast. I loved Ferret. He was a good guy, a little down on his luck. But that seemed like it changed when he met Cecily. I just think everyone should read this book. It is that amazing! I will think about this wonderful read for years to come! You start out with Ferret landing at the sister's home, and then we go back, way back to find out why. Why was in he that balloon? I loved the bit of mystery, lots of love, friendship and more in this fabulous book! Read it NOW! You won't be sorry! I received this book from Goodreads first read program in exchange for my honest opinion!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
PierresFamily More than 1 year ago
This is a sweet love story, which is quite enjoyable - as long as you can "suspend disbelief" about some spiritual issues. But due to a couple confusing reviews, I was under the misconception that ¿"Swan Gondola" was mostly a book about the Omaha World's Fair. The fair is actually only a minor character in the background of the love story. I did enjoy being transported to another century and city, and the love story was moving. I also appreciated that it was not overly graphic, and wasn't filled with so many expletives, as some novels are. When all was said and done, I was glad that I read it; the story and characters have stayed in my heart! And in fairness to the author, once you buy the book, there is an interview with him, in which he himself admits it is not truly about the fair per se. He even offers a website for those of us who are World's Fair aficionados. I already have ideas about who should star in the movie. Now if I can just get the Hollywood producers to heed my ideas. ; )
Anonymous More than 1 year ago