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Fortune’s Rocks

by Anita Shreve

Fourteen-year-old Olympic Biddeford is spending the summer with her parents at their seasonal house at Fortune’s Rocks.

Her father handles her education himself and is in fact a publisher of mildly liberal literature. One author he admires, who also practises as a physician, comes to visit the house. 40 years old, married with four children, he still embarks on an affair with the adolescent girl. They have a swift, passionate summer, torn apart when they are discovered together during Olympic’s fifteenth birthday party. She is taken back to Boston, her parents are mortified and remove themselves from society.

When Olympic is delivered of a baby boy nine months later, he is taken from her and she finds herself in exile at a ladies college and then as a governess. She decides she must get her child back, which means returning to Fortune’s Rocks…

This sensuality of a girl’s rite of passage, the descriptions of landscape, weather, music and light, are vintage Shreve and her seventh novel will thrill her many admirers.


“Enthralling.”  Baltimore Sun

Fortune’s Rocks kept me reading long into the night—and found me back at it right after breakfast….Shreve renders an adolescent girl’s plunge into disastrous passion with excruciating precision and acuteness.”  Boston Globe

“A beautifully written narrative, rich in detail and in a style that has the perfection of a snowflake and all the passion and intensity of first love.”  Seattle Times

“A deliciously intelligent page-turner….A succulent novel of forbidden Victorian passion….It has a morally complex heroine, a breakneck narrative, and an emotional story filled with unpredictable twists and turns.”  Hartford Courant

“Engagingly told….The plot draws you into its increasing tension.”  New York Times

“Keeps you on the edge of your seat….Fortune’s Rocks is a splendid novel that you won’t be able to put down.”  Providence Journal


02 December, 1999

About Anita Shreve

Anita Shreve is the acclaimed author of seventeen novels, including Rescue, A Change in Altitude, Testimony, Fortune's Rocks, The Weight of Water and The Pilot's Wife, which was a selection of Oprah's Book Club. She lives in Massachusetts.


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