A SEASON OF SWANS by Celeste De Blasis


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Herein, De Blasis unveils the bloated conclusion to her three-volume Swan family saga--and, my, what a lot of little cygnets she has spawned. This finale picks up after the Civil War, and then spins its wheels for several pages until, at last, a few lifelike characters come to the fore. Meanwhile, the author rehearses most of the noteworthy events of American history, 1870-1900, and delves into the horse-racing world. Gincie and Travis Culhane (featured in Swan's Chance, 1985) start things off with a bang--a bullet's, that is, fired by Gincie at her dastardly, blackmailing half-brother. So the Culhanes (along with daughter, Lexy, and twin sons Taylor and Kace) hotfoot it back to the thoroughbred horse farm in Maryland's Prince Georges County, owned by Gincie's grande dame grandma (Alex Carrington Falconer). The extended Falconer-Carrington family closes ranks around them, and also bears up under an array of topical troubles of their own: Cousin Phoebe, teaching black children in Georgia, is killed by nightriders; Cousin Anthea, a doctor in Baltimore, quietly pursues abortion rights; and Grandma Alex and her devoted husband, Rane, lose their lives in a raid on Wild Swan's four-footed champions, leaving Gincie and Travis to take over the farm. Gincie's daughter, Lexy, becomes a crusading newspaper reporter (while listening to her biological clock tick), and her brothers squabble over the same woman. But in the end, the land and Swan heritage endure. Flatly recited history, multitudinous anarchronisms, and so many characters that only a genealogist could (or would want to) keep track of them. In short, rampant Swan overpopulation.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1989
ISBN: 553-05362-0
Publisher: Bantam
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