THE YONAHLOSSEE RIDING CAMP FOR GIRLS
THE YONAHLOSSEE RIDING CAMP FOR GIRLS by Anton DiSclafani | Paperback now available from Riverhead Books | A lush, sexy, evocative debut novel of family secrets and girls’-school rituals, set in the 1930s South
A friend told me once that she gained comfort from well loved books....that she would read them in hard times and things would some how be better....
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“I knew what it was like to want, to desire so intensely you were willing to throw everything else into its fire.”
“It has always been a great comfort to me that I could bring a book anywhere, to any place. To any part of my life.”
“We learned in class, were lectured to about wars and famines, ancient kings and queens, the habits of presidents. But the lectures were cursory. We needed to know what happened, because we were the well-bred daughters of men who could afford to educate us--but not why, or how.”
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Nothing is closer than a girl and her horse.
“I thought of my picture in the Castle. But what would future girls see when they looked at the photograph during their daily comings and goings, peering closely? Not the shade of my hair, rendered colorless. Not anything, really. Just a girl on a horse, like so many other girls.”
I am your equal. I am a wild creature that can never be like you. I have heart, courage, and the game spirit that is my heritage and I will be repected. I can be taught and I can please, but I will never be your possesion. Mine is a warrior spirit that can not be broken in punishment or defeated even in death for my spirit lives on in my children's children.
“And horses were always a part of my life, a blessing; taking comfort in them had always ben something I’d done by instinct, and it was instinct I never outgrew. I took pleasure in how good I was in the saddle, how well I knew my way around a horse. I was good at something in a way most people are never good at anything in their lives.”
“But I discovered that I was very good at ignoring the unalterable. Sometimes it was as if God was watching, had narrowed his vision until Yonahlossee appeared, nestled in the mountains. I had wanted something very badly, and then I had gotten it, and the getting kept getting better.”