The Promise

The Promise From the author of The Personal History of Rachel Dupree shortlisted for the Orange Award for New Writers and longlisted for the Orange Prize Young pianist Catherine Wainwright flees the fashion

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  • Title: The Promise
  • Author: Ann Weisgarber
  • ISBN: 9781629142364
  • Page: 364
  • Format: Hardcover
  • From the author of The Personal History of Rachel Dupree, shortlisted for the Orange Award for New Writers and longlisted for the Orange Prize.1900 Young pianist Catherine Wainwright flees the fashionable town of Dayton, Ohio in the wake of a terrible scandal Heartbroken and facing destitution, she finds herself striking up correspondence with a childhood admirer, the reFrom the author of The Personal History of Rachel Dupree, shortlisted for the Orange Award for New Writers and longlisted for the Orange Prize.1900 Young pianist Catherine Wainwright flees the fashionable town of Dayton, Ohio in the wake of a terrible scandal Heartbroken and facing destitution, she finds herself striking up correspondence with a childhood admirer, the recently widowed Oscar Williams In desperation she agrees to marry him, but when Catherine travels to Oscar s farm on Galveston Island, Texas a thousand miles from home she finds she is little prepared for the life that awaits her The island is remote, the weather sweltering, and Oscar s little boy Andre is grieving hard for his lost mother And though Oscar tries to please his new wife, the secrets of the past sit uncomfortably between them Meanwhile for Nan Ogden, Oscar s housekeeper, Catherine s sudden arrival has come as a great shock For not only did she promise Oscar s first wife that she would be the one to take care of little Andre, but she has feelings for Oscar which she is struggling to suppress And when the worst storm in a generation descends, the women will find themselves tested as never before.

    One thought on “The Promise”

    1. Ann Weisgarber excels at depicting the inner lives of people living through difficult historical times. She writes with a graceful simplicity that lays bare the natural beauty of the landscape and her characters' turbulent emotions. I found The Promise to be an even more engrossing read than her first novel, The Personal History of Rachel DuPree.In Dayton, Ohio, in 1900, 29-year-old Catherine Wainwright re-establishes a correspondence with an old friend, Oscar Williams, after her affair with her [...]

    2. Ann Weisgarber's debut novel The Personal History of Rachel Dupree was shortlisted for the Orange Award for New Writers and longlisted for the Orange Prize in 2009. Her second novel The Promise looks like it will attract similar plaudits.Set in the US in 1900, we are told the story of young pianist Catherine Wainright who is left in desperate circumstances following an inappropriate liaison with a married man. Shunned by the "proper" folk of Dayton, Ohio she grasps at straws in an effort not to [...]

    3. 4.5 stars!My 1st book by this author. I have her other novel, The Personal History Of Rachel DuPree, & look forward to reading it soon.My friend, Trudy and I did a buddy read on this, & we both loved the story. It is about a young woman who is scorned by her community for an affair she had with a married man. Back in 1900, being married before the old age of 30 was crucial. She leaves Ohio to reunite with her childhood friend, Oscar, who is recently widowed with a young son. Catherine is [...]

    4. 3.5 What first attracted me to this novel was the setting, I just love Galveston, Texas. Throw in the hurricane that devastated the city and I just had to read this.Catherine and Oscar come together in a very unusual way, one fleeing from a scandal and the other, a childhood admirer, whose firs wife had died leaving his 4 year old son, motherless.What follows is a warm and inviting story as Catherine attempts to get used to a way of life she is not at all used to and Oscar tries to put together [...]

    5. A powerful, touching, wise and beautifully executed book! There is so much below the surface of this story of two women's love for the same man set against the devastating Galveston hurricane of 1900. This book is about forgiveness--of self, of others, of fate--and its redemptive power. Ann Weisgarber is a masterful writer who plumbs the truths of the human condition while enthralling readers with a tension-filled tale of characters caught in circumstances beyond their control. Her books offer a [...]

    6. This book would not leave me alone until I finished it. Catherine, Oscar, Nan and Andre were all fully developed characters who each wiggled his way into my heart. Catherine, a renowned pianist from Dayton OH found herself ostracized for a liaison with a married man. With nowhere to turn, she reconnects with Oscar, an old admirer, the man who once delivered coal to her family. She joins Oscar and his son Andre in Galveston Island, TX out of desperation, learning a lot about herself in the proces [...]

    7. The deadliest hurricane in U.S. history made landfall on Galveston Island, Texas and the surrounding area in 1900. It destroyed the island and killed thousands of people. The author cleverly uses this horrific storm as the background for the story of Catherine and Oscar.Catherine lives in Dayton Ohio and is an accomplished pianist who’s only source of income is from her students. When the community hears of her romantic scandal with a married man the parents take their children out of her scho [...]

    8. I liked this book, but I thought it was very slow. I thought it would be interesting to read about the 1900 Galveston Hurricane, and I liked the story that went with it, but I could have put it down at any point, and never picked it back up. It wasn't until the last 50 pages, that the book got good. I am giving it 3 1/2 stars only because of the page turning ending, otherwise I would give it a 3.

    9. I loved The Personal History of Rachel DuPree and so, was thrilled to get my hands on Ms.Weisgarber's next novel. The writing is, in my opinion, just as flawless, just as tantalizing, in that I was drawn in by the story and the women telling their stories, almost immediately, and could not put it down. A beautiful story about love, and redemption, butd, sad, sad. The ending left me disappointed. I found myself imagining how I could of made it end better. But it is nonetheless, a riveting story t [...]

    10. I am becoming, more and more, a fan of historical fiction – and Ann Weisgarber is yet another author to thank for this new appreciation. The characterization in this book was something to behold – this being probably one of the best first-person point-of-view stories I’ve read.I felt I really got to know and respect Nan and Catherine – two very different women with distinct voices and ideals – thrust into one another's lives under the most conflicting of circumstances. The story is bas [...]

    11. This story had me not wanting to keep reading because I did not want the book to end. It is about three women who live in Galveston, TX in 1900. (the year of the deadly hurricane which was the biggest natural disaster of the 20th century) All three love the same man and his son. A promise is made to the dying mother and first wife by her best friend that may be impossible to keep with the arrival of a second wife. The emotions and inner thoughts of the two surviving women were so real that I fel [...]

    12. In 2011 I read Weisgarber's fantastic debut, The Personal History of Rachel Dupree.  It was the kind of historical novel I adored -- unique setting and era, unbelievable heroine, fabulous historical detail.  It got tons of love (lots of wonderful prize nominations), and most recently, was praised at a writing class I took -- all for good reason.Weisgarber's newest surpasses my love for Rachel Dupree. I'm in that flail-y, can't speak coherently kind of place with this review, so I'll just say t [...]

    13. I read Ann Weisgarber's first novel The Personal History of Rachel Dupree way back in March 2009 and thought it was really stunning. It went on to be short listed for the Orange Award for New Writers and was on the long list for the Orange Prize UK. It was with some trepidation that I started to read her second book, The Promise. I wondered how she was going to write something as evocative as her first novel. I started reading The Promise on the train down to London yesterday and I finished it d [...]

    14. I love Ann Weisgarber's writing and absolutely could not put this book down--even though I wanted it to last and last. Like The Personal History of Rachel DuPreethis takes place in a beautiful part of the country with an unforgiving climate, and is about the difficult choices that women make when those choices are limited by circumstances and the time in which they live. Great character development, compelling details about what it was like to live on Galveston Island, TX in 1900 (rattlesnakes i [...]

    15. I was really impressed by this book and hope others will consider giving it a try--I'm surprised that I hadn't heard of it at all until I ran across it at the library! Historical fiction set in 1900 Galveston, in the days just leading up to and including the hurricane that killed over 6000 people there. The story centers around Catherine Wainwright, who finds herself at the center of a scandal in her hometown of Dayton, Ohio, and tries to make a fresh start in Galveston by marrying a recently wi [...]

    16. Like the author's first bookThe Personal History of Rachel DuPree which I thoroughly enjoyed this is a historical novel loosely featuring a real event - a devastating storm. I loved this book too, just couldn't put it down. However this has much more depth than it would seem, it's a novel of place, of time and of people, all of which are described accurately and realistically. We are introduced to two strong and instantly recognizable female narrators. Told in turns by Catherine, an unusual woma [...]

    17. In 1900 young Catherine is disgraced after having an affair with a married man. Fearing there is nothing left to live for and trying to make contact with anyone she can, she writes a letter to a young childhood love, Oscar. Unbeknowst to her, Oscar recently lost his wife from malaria and he is left with the task of raising his little boy. They correspond for a short while and then he proposes. Catherine accepts and move to hot Galvaston. This book has the makings to be a 5 star novel and that is [...]

    18. This is a rare book. The author is outstanding and the story is captivating. I was swept up in the telling of it and with the very distinct characters that inhabit the pages. Truly one of those "you can't put it down" books of the season. It's luminous and heart-rending. I don't know much about Galveston, Texas, having never been there, but Ms Weisgarber brings it to life vividly. She sharpens our senses to the salty air of the beach, the weathered landscape and the beaten habitations of Oscar's [...]

    19. This book is stunning. It builds slowly, as you come to know the two main characters on a deep, extremely personal level. The intensity of the story grows, as the storm approaches and by the final third of the book, it is impossible to put down. I was literally breathless as I read, my heart pounded. The author's description of the storm was terrifying and I actually wept in fear for all the fictional characters who had grown so real in my mind. By the time I turned the final page, I was physica [...]

    20. This is a beautifully written and achingly sad book. Grounded in the historical fact of the 1900 Galveston hurricane that killed 8000 people, the story revolves around Catherine Wainwright, a pianist who commits a grave indiscretion, and Oscar Williams, a childhood friend who asks her to move from Dayton and become his wife. Weisgarber's deft prose will weave a spell around you and won't let go.

    21. Set during the days leading up to and after a devastating hurricane practically wiped Galveston off the map this book was a pleasure to read. The characters were well thought out and the plot takes some mighty crafty twists and turns. The first book by this author that I have read but it surely will not be the last one of her's that I read.

    22. As she did with The Personal History of Rachel DuPree, Ann Weisgarber has done an exceptional job of creating complex, believable characters, then allowing us to experience their challenging world. This is a book you'll read in one or two sittings. We've already bought extra copies of The Promise as gifts for family and friends.

    23. A disgraced woman, with no other options, agrees to marry an old suitor who has recently become a widower. She arrives in Galveston in August of 1900. You know what’s coming, don’t you?An emotional story, more powerful than a Category 5 hurricane. Oh, and that’s in this tale, too, if you didn’t know.

    24. I loved this book! I've decided that historical fiction must be my favorite genre . This was very well written and I loved the characters. I think it had a theme of everyone deserving a second chance. I know nothing about Galveston so that was interesting too

    25. All novels begin with trouble. Catherine is on the verge of poverty after she has an affair with a married man.Disgraced, Catherine Wainwright decides to make a fresh start in Galveston. Though she never planned on marriage, a man she scarcely remembers from high school has offered to marry her.From Dayton, Ohio, Catherine journeys to the unknown where the food, religion, climate and ways of life are foreign to her.Oscar Williams, the man who offered marriage, had adapted to Galveston. Catherine [...]

    26. I loved this story of Galveston in 1900 during the time of the hurricane. As someone who has spent time in Galveston, I enjoyed the landmarks mentioned and the historical references. I also liked that most of this story was focused on the west side of the island and its people rather than just the city. The descriptions of the island and the storm made me feel like I was there. A wonderful historical novel!

    27. While some readers may be disappointed in the ending (as expressed in many of the reviews), this novel is flawless written and a profoundly moving, with alternating narrative by two distinctly different female voices. How these women negotiate the tensions of their relationship and disparate differences through loss and shared loves is Utterly engrossing. The devastating ending nonetheless brings the setting to life as a character itself, and underscores the tenuous relationship building at the [...]

    28. I've been fascinated by the Galveston hurricane since I read Isaac's Storm by Erik Larsen. This book did not disappoint. But the hurricane really is only a small part of the book. The interwoven relationships of Oscar, Catherine, Nan, and Andre are very complex. The relationships evolve and change as the novel goes on. By the time the hurricane hit, my attachment to the characters had definitely grown, and I was left a little gut wrenched by the end.

    29. Having grown up in Galveston, I've always been fascinated by stories of the 1900 Storm. This is one of my favorites, because it incorporates many of the historical facts, but its plot and characters transcend the setting. The book is full of nuances and meanings, as the characters face their feelings of guilt, obligation, and love. The book is full of promise, not just the literal one, and I promise it will touch the heart of any reader.

    30. Set in 1900, this moving novel tells of a talented young pianist, Catherine Wainwright, who leaves Dayton, Ohio having been involved in a scandalous affair and subsequently found herself ostracized by the community. In desperation she starts writing once more to the man she once corresponded with years before and who admired her back then, Oscar Williams. They agree to marry, and Catherine travels hundreds of miles to Galveston in Texas, where Oscar has now made a life for himself. He is recentl [...]

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