And for good reason too. Rash’s titular character Serena, is like a scene-eating Valkyrie walking right off the stage of some bloody Elizabethan tragedy, and int...more
i am alarmed that i only wrote a four-line review of this amazing book. now that i am starting to read the cove, i figure now is as good a time as any to remind this website just how good ron rash is, and how so far, serena is the best of them. (i am only on page 15 of the cove, so this could change)
whenever i try to hand-sell this at work, i will usually just say: "it is like macbeth in a logging community. with a greek chorus." whi...more
Serena focuses mainly on the Pembertons - newlywed timber barons working t...more
Bashing in a raccoon's skull with an axe...Starving a captive eagle to bend it to your will...Baiting a field with corn and apples so you can shoot twelve deer and a bear for sport, then just leave them all piled in the middle of the field to rot after you've killed them...Are you sickened yet? I found mys...more
She and her husband George Pemberton are Depression-era timber barons in North Carolina. We’re introduced to them...more
Love to see the "power hungry female" fleshed out and OWNING it. Truly unlikeable character(s) in actions and deeds. Business partner not agree with your vision? Hunting accident. Disloyalty? Make an example out of him. The courageous and altruistic? SO DEAD. Strip and rape the land, too. Then move onto another country. Repeat.
Wow. Just wow.
On the other hand, her husband, a much better d...more
It's not that it isn't entertaining. I just couldn't really get myself to give two craps about any of the characters. And I couldn't suspend my disbelief enough to find any of it realistic. (I mean, seriously? T...more
In this beautifully written gothic novel, Rash paints an unforgettable portrait of a truly frightening woman, an "Ayn Rand [character] taken to sociopathic extremes" (Christian Science Monitor). Drawing comparisons to Lady Macbeth and Medea, critics were repulsed and fascinated by Serena. Though some felt that her wickedness, undiluted by the slightest pangs of compassion or empathy, crossed into the realm of caricature toward the end, they all agreed that it was impossible to put the book down....more
The opening chapter reveals that Serena's husband has impregnated one of the local camp workers, set...more
It has the aura of a morality play about the consequences of unchecked capitalism and its brute destruction of the environment and people. The novel is set in a logging camp at the beginning of the depression. Pemberton, the owner, has married Serena, whom he has kn...more
The book opens as Serena and her newlywed husband...more
This book takes place near our cabin, just over the NC state line, which is one of the reasons I like to read Ron Rash -- he sets m...more
Club Read: Southern Literary Trail
I think one of the timber men (Ross?) pegged Serena correctly when he suggested that the only way to dispatch her would be with a stake through the heart.
How many ways can you take the measure of an evil goddess of the night? Saving a life, Galloway's, only to shape it into a tool for her own destructive purposes? Co-habiting with the eagle in the wilds to achieve dominion over the lesser demons -- the snakes and the dragon? Beyond her role in the deaths of in...more
This is a novel about…well, it’s about Serena. Serena is a young woman from Colorado who has managed to attract and marry Pemberton, a lumber magnate who has taken over vast stretches of forest land in what is now The Great Smoky Mountains. It is the middle of the Depression. While financial deals are being cut so that rich men can become richer, Serena becomes one of the plotters on the side of money. The government and private supporters are trying to buy up the...more
This is all good....more
Serena is a new wife, from Colorado, to Pemberton, the owner of land th...more
The story is a slow-burn narrative, not quick and suspenseful, but contemplative. It takes its time in developing each character and showing not only how they react to each other, bu...more