THE WHEEL OF EARTH by Helga Sandburg
Kirkus Star


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All the kitchen, mealtime and farm scenes here will find an echo in Gladya Hasty Carroll's As The Earth Turns for this is a family that, in spite of natural causes, lives well and comfortably. Here, though, is a father who is determined to impress his pattern on his household and when his wife escapes in madness, his older daughter evades his domination after a willing seduction and a child, and his younger daughter returns to flaunt her independence, even as a good Catholic, he has a single avenue to escape -- suicide. This is Ellen Gaddy's story -- Ellen who loves her posts, resents her father's preference for her younger sister Frankie, grieves when their girl, Penny, leaves -- and she learns to love young Christian Ay, who working at a neighboring farm, is about to defy her father. Called home by his family, he never knows that Ellen bears his non through the help of Penny and vanishes from her life. Standing strong against her father she is able to bring her boy back only to find that the grandfather is again seeking a mold for his impress and so runs away to an independent life with a Polish family in Illinois. There her love for the oldest son meets another defeat when he is killed and it is her father's self destruction that reunites her with Christian to begin a new life on the old farm. Over two decades of isolated Kentucky hill living frame the web of rejection and acceptance, the encroachment of new ways and the establishment of a life to be lived on one's own terms for a book of sensitivity and solid roots. Basic appeal to women.

Pub Date: April 18th, 1958
Publisher: McDowell, Obolensky