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James Conroyd Martin

Push Not The River

James Conroyd Martin Push Not The River
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All used items are in good or better condition. May have minor damage to jewel case including scuffs or cracks, or to the item cover including scuffs. The cover art and liner notes are included for a CD. VHS or DVD box is included. The majority of our disc games come in their case. The majority of our cartridge games do not include instructions or a case. No fuzzy/snowy frames on VHS tapes.
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Series:

Anna Maria Berezowska

Biographical note:

A native of Chicago, James Conroyd Martin chairs the English Department at Marian High School, a well-known college-prep high school in Chicago Heights, Illinois. He holds degrees from St. Ambrose and DePaul Universities.

Description for Reading Group Guide:

A panoramic and epic novel in the grand romantic style, Push Not the River is the rich story of Poland in the late 1700s--a time of heartache and turmoil as the country's once peaceful people are being torn apart by neighboring countries and divided loyalties. It is then, at the young and vulnerable age of seventeen, when Lady Anna Maria Berezowska loses both of her parents and must leave the only home she has ever known.
With Empress Catherine's Russian armies streaming in to take their spoils, Anna is quickly thrust into a world of love and hate, loyalty and deceit, patriotism and treason, life and death. Even kind Aunt Stella, Anna's new guardian who soon comes to personify Poland's courage and spirit, can't protect Anna from the uncertain future of the country.
Anna, a child no longer, turns to love and comfort in the form of Jan, a brave patriot and architect of democracy, unaware that her beautiful and enigmatic cousin Zofia has already set her sights on the handsome young fighter. Thus Anna walks unwittingly into Zofia's jealous wrath and darkly sinister intentions.
Forced to survive several tragic events, many of them orchestrated by the crafty Zofia, a strengthened Anna begins to learn to place herself in the way of destiny--for love and for country. Heeding the proud spirit of her late father, Anna becomes a major player in the fight against the countries who come to partion her beloved Poland.
Push Not the River is based on the true eighteenth century diary of Anna Maria Berezowska, a Polish countess who lived through the rise and fall of the historic Third of May Constitution. Vivid, romantic, and thrillingly paced, it paints the emotional and unforgettable story of the metamorphosis of a nation--and of a proud and resilient young woman.

Excerpt from book:

Push Not the River
Part One
There are three things that are difficult to keep hidden: a fire, a cold, and love.
 
--POLISH PROVERB
Author's Note
The cornerstone of this novel is the unpublished diary of Countess Anna Maria Berezowska, translated into English from the Polish by her descendant John A. Stelnicki. Countess Berezowska began keeping a diary when her personal world began to disintegrate and writing became for her, I suspect, a great therapy. She sometimes read and copied into her own diary the colorful entries from her cousin Zofia's diary. It was Zofia's often risque content that most likely accounted for subsequent generations' withholding the document from the public. For some decades, it was even sealed in wax and hidden away. Amazingly, the years of the countess' personal crises coincided with some of the most important years in all of Polish history: the Third of May Constitution years. It is fortunate that such a remarkable private view--and a woman's view--of those perilous years has survived.
PUSH NOT THE RIVER. Copyright © 2003 by James Conroyd Martin. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or reviews. For information, address St. Martin's Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10010.

Main description:

A panoramic and epic novel in the grand romantic style, Push Not the River is the rich story of Poland in the late 1700s--a time of heartache and turmoil as the coun
"Push Not the River contains all the sweep and romance of the classic romantic epics such as Gone with the Wind and Doctor Zhivago, with a heroine who remains strong in the face of both personal and political tragedy. An enthralling tale of courage, survival, and hope, Anna Maria's story is at once timeless and timely."
-India Edghill, author of Queenmaker

"Push Not the River is a wonderful epic historical saga in the grand romantic style. The plot never lets up; it gallops at break-neck speed through a vividly portrayed historical landscape, against which we see the triumphant transformation of Anna . . . into a strong and powerful woman."
-Jane Feather, bestselling author of Kissed by Shadows

"James Conroyd Martin's vivid historical novel captivates the reader with its sweeping depiction of a bygone society on the cusp of violent change. Combining politics with intrigue and romance, Push Not the River gives us a glimpse into the turbulent era of late eighteenth century Poland and its people. Aristocrats and peasants, patriots and traitors come alive in this story, and the Polish soul is beautifully illuminated through ancient myths, folkways, and wisdoms. With his juxtaposition of the personal and political, Martin weaves a compelling tale of transformation--both of a remarkable young woman and her remarkable nation."
-Jennifer Donnelly, author of The Tea Rose

"Martin's novel transports the reader two hundred years into Poland's glorious past, a world of castles and manor houses. One woman's life provides a metaphor for a country which--with the Third of May Constitution--was the first to attempt democratic reform in modern Europe. While the attempt failed, Push Not the River sings of a people's pride and indomitable hope."
-Jan Lorys, director of the Polish Museum of America

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