The Single Feather Paperback – 14 Feb 2015
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Rachel flees her past to build a new life for herself. But living a lie isn't easy. She struggles with a guilty conscience and the fear of being exposed. Eventually, she has to decide: tell the truth and risk all, or say nothing and betray everything she has ever believed in. A stunning debut novel written with intelligence and clarity. Rachel's efforts to belong exposes our prejudices against those more vulnerable in society while shining a light on the power of friendship and the importance of being part of a community. Marianne Wheelaghan, bestselling author of The Blue Suitcase and Food of Ghosts --Third party author review
An intense, bittersweet story for anyone who's ever doubted themselves. Louisa Dang, author of The Rain Catcher, winner of Duke University Writers Workshop Fiction Prize --Third party author review
About the Author
Ruth Hunt is a writer and artist from the north of England. The Single Feather is her first novel, published by Pilrig Press.
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With her mother’s help, Rachel starts her journey with a dramatic escape from the people entrusted to look after her. The threat of these abusive ‘guards’ hangs over her as she tries to make a life for herself in the small town of Carthom.
She needs to be part of a community if she is to succeed with her independence, so she joins a group of local artists. The members are mostly elderly locals, or other with disability. Unfortunately, many of the former have diehard prejudices about anyone claiming benefits, especially for mental health reasons, as they have been villainized by parts of the media.
With others in the group she struggles to remain positive, but this resolve is tested to the extreme when one of her allies comes under attack. With the help of her new friend, Kate, she is able to transcend their differences but not before tragedy occurs.
Meanwhile, Rachel has skeletons in her closet too, and the closer she grows to her new friend, the more she feels that she must come clean or betray that friendship.
The Single Feather is a story of overcoming life’s hardest obstacles, including guilt and self-loathing. Rachel’s main outlet is art, and with the memory of her father’s demise ever present, her determination to stay in the light will be tested to the limit.
The Single Feather follows Rachel as she moves to a new home and joins an art group.. Where she meets other members and get to know their struggles and talents... I stayed up all night reading this book and found that some parts brought me to tears and yet the beauty in the way this is written and the diversity between views and changes in the world around Rachel and her new friends made this a gripping read.... I think this book has a lot of heart and some very special ways of thinking of things throughout...
This book is a real credit to the Author and I hope this Author writes other book as she is now on my favourite Author list to look out for...
I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to follow one woman's growth from one part of her life to another... Beautiful, special and totally amazing read....
There is deep introspection in these pages also, and in particular the protagonist Rachel really comes alive. We feel for her pain, for her raw deal, and we come away richer for the experience.
Going on longer would do a disservice- masterful, timely debut and highly recommended :)
Reluctant to face the outside world because of her disability, the only people she meets on a regular basis are the carers and her mother. Things look up however, when Rachel, a talented artist, is persuaded to join an art group. This seems to be an answer to her prayers but, unfortunately there is tension between the older members and the younger ones. The various characters in the group and the relationships that develop between them is at the heart of the story.
This fascinating novel has a powerful political message too. It is a condemnation of the present Governments austerity measures which have resulted in cuts to welfare benefits. Claimants unable to work being stigmatised by a hostile right wing press. Some even driven to suicide when they no longer have enough money to live on.