TEETHMARKS ON MY TONGUE in Newsday’s “Books that Deserved more Buzz in 2016″

Set in the mid 1980s, Battersby’s debut follows a couple of years in the much disrupted life of Helen Stockton Defoe of Richmond, Virginia, a teenager who witnesses her mother’s shooting death on television. Unable to bear life with her heartless, dismissive father, she heads off to France, where she adopts an ancient, incontinent dog. Wondering, as she tells us, “where to head for in mainland Europe with my elderly bed wetter,” she finds a job at a horse-training establishment in the Loire Valley and embarks on a completely new life. Psychologically penetrating, deft in emblematical resonance and leavened by dog love and dark wit, the novel is a very fine coming-of-age story.  — KATHERINE A. POWERS

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