THE HUMMINGBIRD’S CAGE

Tamara Dietrich

A dazzling debut novel about taking chances, finding hope, and learning to stand up for your dreams…

Everyone in Wheeler, New Mexico, thinks Joanna leads the perfect life: the quiet, contented housewife of a dashing deputy sheriff, raising a beautiful young daughter, Laurel. But Joanna’s reality is nothing like her facade. Behind closed doors, she lives in constant fear of her husband. She’s been trapped for so long, escape seems impossible—until a stranger offers her the help she needs to flee….

On the run, Joanna and Laurel stumble upon the small town of Morro,

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A dazzling debut novel about taking chances, finding hope, and learning to stand up for your dreams…

Everyone in Wheeler, New Mexico, thinks Joanna leads the perfect life: the quiet, contented housewife of a dashing deputy sheriff, raising a beautiful young daughter, Laurel. But Joanna’s reality is nothing like her facade. Behind closed doors, she lives in constant fear of her husband. She’s been trapped for so long, escape seems impossible—until a stranger offers her the help she needs to flee….

On the run, Joanna and Laurel stumble upon the small town of Morro, a charming and magical village that seems to exist out of time and place. There a farmer and his wife offer her sanctuary, and soon, between the comfort of her new home and blossoming friendships, Joanna’s soul begins to heal, easing the wounds of a decade of abuse.

But her past—and her husband—aren’t so easy to escape. Unwilling to live in fear any longer, Joanna must summon a strength she never knew she had to fight back and forge a new life for her daughter and herself….

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  • NAL
  • Paperback
  • June 2015
  • 352 Pages
  • 9780451473370

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$15.00

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About Tamara Dietrich

Tamara Dietrich was born in Germany and raised in Appalachia. She has bounced around in states as far-flung as Maryland, New Mexico, Maine, New York, Arizona and, now, Virginia. Along the way, she has become an award-winning newspaper journalist for her news reporting, feature writing and column writing. When she’s not spending every free moment working on novels, she’s cycling, hiking, jogging and gardening. Travel is a particular pleasure, although she doesn’t get nearly enough of it. She’s the mother of a 19-year-old son, and provides room and board and couch privileges to three cats and a dog. The Hummingbird’s Cage is her debut novel.

Praise

A beautiful story of one woman’s reinvention, with a little touch of magic that will warm your heart.”—Laura Lane McNeal, author of Dollbaby

Brilliant and beautifully written. Unflinching. Honest. Heartbreaking.”—Menna Van Praag, author of The House at the End of Hope Street

Here is a story of a woman’s courage and strength, the power of friendship, and the gift of grace which magically appears when we need it most. Truly inspired and beautifully written, you will love this novel.”Lynne Branard, author of The Art of Arranging Flowers

Discussion Questions

Jim uses some classic tactics of an abuser to keep Joanna trapped. What are they? Did Joanna have chances to leave her husband, other than through Bernadette’s help?

Why are the people in Morro there? Some of them seem to be people who have died. But Joanna’s unborn son is there as well, which suggests it’s a place for souls or spirits of another kind. Is Morro a type of heaven?

The Mountain in Morro has a strong effect on Joanna. What does the Mountain symbolize? What could be the “unwavering light” at its crest?

Why might Laurel hear the barking dog, but not Joanna?

Even though Jim never physically shows up in Morro, Joanna still strongly feels his presence there – why might that be? Is it Joanna and Laurel’s inability to break free of him? Or could he be inserting himself in some way?

Do you think Morro is a real place? Or is it all just a hallucination of the heroine? And if it is a hallucination, does it matter?

Why is Joanna given the option to return to the “real world,” while others in Morro aren’t?

Joanna ultimately decides to leave Morro. Would you have made the same decision?

Joanna’s final battle with Jim echoes many of the things she’d seen or experienced while in Morro. What are some of them?

A freak hailstorm helps Joanna defeat Jim. Was it a natural phenomenon, or could it have been more than that?

Why do Joanna and Laurel put hummingbird feeders all around their house in Taos? What does the hummingbird symbolize?

Will Joanna ever return to Morro? If she does, what might she find there?