Author(s): Ann Patchett
It is the 1960s. Rose Clinton arrives at St Elizabeth's, a Roman Catholic home for unwed mothers in Habit, Kentucky. Rose is a young woman who has decided, to be 'a liar for the rest of my life'.
She is pregnant but also married (athough at St Elizabeth's she claims to be unwed), fleeing her dull but loving husband without telling him she is pregnant. Nor does she tell her widowed and much-loved mother, whom she also abandons in penance for leaving her marriage. Rose plans to give her baby up because she knows she cannot be the mother it needs. But St. Elizabeth is near a healing spring, and when Rose's time draws near, she realises that she cannot go through with her plans. It is also clear that Rose cannot remain untouched by what she has left behind; by the ever-watchful Sister Evangeline; by the love of Son, the handyman at St. Elizabeth; or later by the birth of her daughter Cecilia.
Ann Patchett was born in Los Angeles in 1963. She is the author of Taft, The Magician's Assistant and Bel Canto for which she won the Orange Prize 2002. She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Nashville Banner Tennessee Writer of the Year Award. She has also written for numerous publications including, the New York Times Sunday Magazine, the Chicago Tribune, the Boston Globe, Vogue, GQ, Elle and Gourmet. Ann Patchett lives in Nashville, Tennessee.