A dreamlike quality flows through this novel set during the influenza pandemic of 1918, and it's a style that will hinder some readers even as it enthralls others. These poetic attributes also lend a timelessness; even though the story takes place nearly a century ago, it feels easily transferable to modern times. The plot follows 14-year-old Lyza, the daughter of two eccentrics living on the borders of a small Maine town. When her beloved Mater is suddenly struck down with influenza, Lyza is left with a difficult decision: head to the big city of Portland to take a college entrance exam (like Mater would've wanted), or stay behind to help Pater, an artist seemingly incapable of rudimentary tasks such as eating and paying bills. He's also "a man who saw angels in meteors"-what seems like just another example of his detachment before the plot makes a surprising supernatural swerve. This mature, challenging work is bleak, but haunting in its careful use of suggestion and nuance--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.