The Quickening is a very special novel. Painfully told, it records the lives and friendship of two farm women in early 1900s Iowa. The chapters alternate between the voice of Enidina (Eddie) and Mary, who are very different women. Eddie is strong in body and spirit, made for country farm life. Mary is delicate and at odds with farming and the isolation of rural living.
They form a friendship, a bond born of necessity rather than choice. Through the years with its many life changes they remain loyal to each other. The dependence brought by isolation is their constant bond.
As the Great Depression looms, affecting farming and the community, families come under pressure and friendships are tested. Ultimately, secrets are exposed and a series of events changes everything with lasting consequences for everyone.
Michelle Hoover gives an honest look at women’s friendships born of need and strife. Her portrayal of farming and the harsh realities of it, particularly those in times of turmoil are honest and heartfelt.
This is a remarkable book by a very gifted writer.