Thursday, May 22, 2014

BLOG TOUR: The Orphans of Race Point by Patry Francis

Title: The Orphans of Race Point
Author: Patry Francis
Genre: Adult Contemporary
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Release Date: May 6/2014
Acquired:  Print ARC provided by publisher
Goodreads: ADD

Set on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, a suspenseful page-turning saga of love, murder, and the true meaning of faith from the author of the acclaimed The Liar’s Diary.

Set in the close-knit Portuguese community of Provincetown, Massachusetts, The Orphans of Race Point traces the relationship between Hallie Costa and Gus Silva, who meet as children in the wake of a terrible crime that leaves Gus parentless. Their friendship evolves into an enduring and passionate love that will ask more of them than they ever imagined.

On the night of their high school prom, a terrible tragedy devastates their relationship and profoundly alters the course of their lives. And when, a decade later, Gus—now a priest—becomes entangled with a distraught woman named Ava and her daughter Mila, troubled souls who bring back vivid memories of his own damaged past, the unthinkable happens: he is charged with murder. Can Hallie save the man she’s never stopped loving, by not only freeing him from prison but also—finally—the curse of his past?

Told in alternating voices, The Orphans of Race Point illuminates the transformative power of love and the myriad ways we find meaning in our lives.


The Orphans of Race Point was daunting in size, and had me questioning it's motives before I even cracked the first page. A 544-page contemporary? I had past experience warning bells going off in my head like crazy (see, We Are Water by Wally Lamb). Those were quickly quieted, as I reached the halfway point, and couldn't believe I had read so much already. This book was chronological narrative done SO right, and an absolute ravager of my emotions-every single one.

The Orphans of Race Point was laid out in seven parts, ranging, and skipping years between 1978 to 2011. Each section felt like it's own story, and sometimes, even a different genre. The way it came together, collectively, was nothing short of spectacular. Hallie and Gus, the shining stars of the plot line, begin their interaction at the precious age of 9, in Provincetown, Massachusetts, after Gus's mother has been murdered by his father. The pair form a silent, motherless, bond, and set into motion events that would become so very far out of their control. At 16, their bond deepens into a hormonal, teenage love affair-a relationship so seemingly untouchable, that the earth itself couldn't separate them. Though, there was always an underlying darkness, and on their prom night, it consumes not only Hallie and Gus, but every single person in their circle. The book flashes forward to adult life, where everyone's life has been permanently altered by the tragedy; Gus and Hallie torn apart by Gus's decision to enter the seminary. They are reunited in a later section, after Gus has been accused of a heinous crime. Love, and loyalty, become the driving forces, as Hallie, and Gus's closest friends fight to prove his innocence, and solve the mysteries of their own lives.

There was SO much happening in this book, however, and with absolute credit to the author's writing abilities, there was not one moment spent feeling overwhelmed. Patry Francis created something so fantastically epic with The Orphans of Race Point, so poignantly tragic, and yet, relatable. There was no denying the power of her back story, the relationships she established that she didn't have to force me to believe in. I'll admit, I was more drawn to the closeness of Hallie and her father, than of Hallie and Gus. It was a fierceness that spoke of the bond I have with my own father. That was the beauty of this book, there were so many fundamental messages existing at once, it was nearly impossible to not fuse your soul with at least one. The Orphans of Race Point was the ultimate love story, it was the strongest test of trust, it was the truest meaning of family, and it was all of these things, all at once.

The detail alone was something to attest, as the author eventually brought everything to a full circle with giddying twists. Almost every voice was heard, and each was beautifully distinct. Near the conclusion, she introduces the voice of a teenage girl named Mila, and I was blown away with the sharp change in tone. I completely believed her narrative, and kudos to the author for nailing teenage dialogue. My only wish was that Gus was given a chance to tell his story, as he was completely silenced for much of the latter sections of the book. I would welcome an entire novella/companion novel from his point of view.

The Orphans of Race Point was a journey that not a single soul should miss out on. It is one of those stories that your heart didn't even realize it was craving until you've read every last word. This book will stay with me, it will stay with me for a very long time.        

Recommended for fans of: Literary Fiction, Contemporary, Romance, Mystery, Wally Lamb, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, A Vital Constellation of Phenomena, The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow.


CLICK HERE to read all about Patry on her biography page!

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Thank-you to Trish from TLC Book Tours for hosting this tour, and to Harper Perennial for sending me a print ARC to review!

CLICK HERE to follow the rest of the tour


  1. Wow! What a ringing endorsement! Thanks for being on the tour!

  2. Can't believe I'm just seeing this now! "Wow!" is the word! Thank you so much for an AMAZING review. I will be shouting about this one from the roof top!


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