It is 1883, and all of Klara Bozic\u2019s girlish dreams have come crashing down as she arrives in Thirsty, a gritty steel town carved into the slopes above the Monongahela River just outside of Pittsburgh.
She has made a heartbreaking discovery. Her new husband Drago is as abusive as the father she left behind in Croatia. In Kristin Bair O\u2019Keeffe\u2019s debut novel, Klara\u2019s life unfolds over forty years as she struggles to find her place in a new country where her survival depends on the friends who nurture her: gutsy, funny Katherine Zupanovic, who isn\u2019t afraid of Drago\u2019s fist; BenJo, the only black man in Thirsty to have his own shop; and strangely enough, Old Man Rupert, the town drunk. Thirsty follows a chain of unlikely events that keep Klara\u2019s spirit aloft: a flock of angelic butterflies descends on Thirsty; Klara gives birth to her first child in Old Man Rupert\u2019s pumpkin patch; and BenJo gives her a talking bird.
When Klara\u2019s daughter marries a man even more brutal than Drago, Klara is forced to act.
If she doesn\u2019t finally break the cycle of violence in her family, her granddaughters will one day walk the same road, broken and bruised.
As the threads that hold her family together fray and come undone, Klara has to decide if she has the courage to carve out a peaceful spot in the world for herself and her girls.
- Format: Hardback
- Pages: 215 pages
- Publisher: Ohio University Press
- Publication Date: 15/09/2009
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780804011235