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Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward
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Salvage the Bones (2011)

by Jesmyn Ward

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Bois Sauvage (1)

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English (121)  Spanish (1)  All languages (122)
Showing 1-5 of 121 (next | show all)
Salvage the Bones is a raw, gritty, brutal and at times almost painful, read that stays with you long after you've turned the last page - it's definitely YA and even then maybe not for more sensitive readers.

Set in a fictional town in Mississippi, the book follows 15-year old Esch and her family for 12 days: ten days leading up to Hurricane Katrina, the day of the storm and the day after the storm. There's a lot packed into those 12 days. Esch has two older brothers, one younger brother and an alcoholic father that is neglectful on good days and abusive on all the rest. Her mother died giving birth to her younger brother so Esch has basically raised herself, surrounded by her older brothers and their friends. She is a girl that is desperate for love, attention and for someone to actually SEE her. In fact, Esch has been so neglected and mistreated that she doesn't recognize respect when its right in front of her. Salvage the Bones delves into a maelstrom of alcoholism, abuse, teen sex, teen pregnancy, dog fighting and Hurricane Katrina and delivers one big chaotic, emotional punch. ( )
  adrouet | Apr 3, 2019 |
Grimy and heartfelt and grim and sweet, this is a really great book. The final section is memorably eerie, not unlike The Road - only based on our real, very recent past. ( )
  alexrichman | Mar 24, 2019 |
This was such a hard book to read -- the writing was gorgeous, but the story is heartbreaking and will pull at you. I had to put it down several times. I'm very glad I read it though. ( )
  decaturmamaof2 | Mar 23, 2019 |
Outstanding. A fine, fine novel filled with compassion, filial love and dogfighting.

There were a couple of set pieces in here that took my breath away - running through the woods after stealing from the neighbors, everything around Randall's basketball game, THE dogfight and then the arrival of Katrina. But the in between bits are equally stunning - Esch's body awareness, Skeetah's stubbornness and Junior's fragility, and the giant ache of motherlessness that affects them all and binds them to each other. Beautiful. ( )
  asxz | Mar 13, 2019 |
Salvage the Bones is about a family living in Mississippi in 2005 as Katrina is getting ready to hit. The focus is on Esch being pregnant, her brothers, dog fighting, her alcoholic that sometimes there father and the impending hurricane in the Gulf. The kids mother died giving birth to the youngest child and they have pretty much been left to fend for themselves making them a close knit family. I went in expecting the book to be more about the family preparing, fighting and surviving the hurricane and it isn’t, it was still a good read, but I was looking forward to that based on the description. Some scenes are hard to read, like puppies being born, dog fights, and detailed injuries. They are hard to read because they are well written to the point it makes you cringe. With that said, I did not like the dog fighting parts. There was some glamorizing of it and that annoyed me. I’m giving it three stars because it was an interesting read, but I think there was just too much going on to make it an emotional read. It was almost there, but not quite. ( )
1 vote wellreadcatlady | Oct 4, 2018 |
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» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ward, Jesmynprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Becker, UlrikeÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Boothe, CheriseNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ratchford, PattiCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
See now that I, even I am he, and there is no god with me; I kill and I make alive, I wound and I heal, neither is there any can deliver out of my hand. -Deuteronomy 32:39

For though I'm small, I know many things, and my body is an endless eye through which, unfortunately, I see everything. -Gloria Fuertes, "Now"

We on our backs staring at the stars about, talking about what we going to be when we grow up, I said what you wanna be? She said, "Alive." -Outkast, "Da Art of Storytellin' (Part 1)," Aquemini
Dedication
For my brother, Joshua Adam Dedeaux,

who leads while I follow.
First words
China's turned on herself.
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"To give life...is to know what's worth fighting for. And what's love."
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Enduring a hardscrabble existence as the children of alcoholic and absent parents, four siblings from a coastal Mississippi town prepare their meager stores for the arrival of Hurricane Katrina while struggling with such challenges as a teen pregnancy and a dying litter of prize pups.… (more)

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