An award-winning novel set in an ancient stone prison, The Enchanted is viewed through the eyes of a death row inmate who finds escape in his books and in re-imagining life around him, weaving a fantastical story of the world he inhabits. Fearful and reclusive, he senses what others cannot. Though bars confine him every minute of every day, he marries magical visions of golden horses running beneath the prison, heat flowing like molten metal from their backs, with the devastating violence of prison life. Digging into the background of a killer named York, she uncovers wrenching truths that challenge familiar notions of victim and criminal, innocence and guilt, honor and corruption-ultimately revealing shocking secrets of her own.
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Laurie Grassi Updated March 5, Other players include a fallen priest who counsels inmates and longs for a closer relationship with the lady, and the narrator, a fellow inmate who has committed an act so heinous he copes by turning everything he sees into a world of dreams and imagination. Why we love it: The lyrical and redemptive debut novel by Rene Denfeld merges the cold brutality of life behind bars with the magic of fantasy.
Her characters are heartbreakingly human and remind us that even in the most dire circumstances, beauty and love exist and can be transcendent. The inspiration: Denfeld has worked as a death penalty investigator for seven years and often visits inmates on death row. Even if we struggle with terrible traumas or have done unforgivable things, we still want to be seen, heard and loved.
The sadness for me is that often this need is never met. The beauty is that it can be. I locate long-ago family members, witnesses and friends. I unearth old records and documents. I help people share their sad and painful memories. Often this evidence is presented in court, to help the judge and jury better understand my client. Personal history: Denfeld is the mother of three children, all of whom she adopted from state foster care. Books Our next Book Club pick is a story about a man on death row A nameless woman tries to save a condemned man in spite of his horrific crime.
What would it be like to be incarcerated and facing certain death? The power of imagination. How relying on others gives life meaning. The idea that even the worst of us is worth saving. About the author Lives: Portland, Ore.
Our next Book Club pick is a story about a man on death row
It is a story about the ugliness of prison life on Death Row, of living life in an evil underground dungeon. It is about black-shirted execution squads and corrupt guards who order young men in general population to the rape shed for personal gain, then call them used, broken and throwaways to break their spirit of any hope. It is about su. It is about surviving, but wishing death would come bringing a new beginning. It is also a story of a lonely man who will not speak bc his past is so vile, but reads a favorite book to let the words carry him away to another place, another world not so ugly. It is about a lady who continues to investigate backgrounds of hopeless, ruined men to perhaps save a life, a lady with her own damaged past looking for answers.
Rene Denfeld is an author, journalist and licensed investigator specialising in death penalty work. She lives in Portland, Oregon. Her first novel is The Enchanted , set largely in a maximum security prison in Oregon. Below ground level is the wing where death row prisoners are kept, often for years at a time, as they await the exhaustion of the appeals procedure. Its narrator is one of these prisoners: he has not spoken aloud for many years. An investigator has been assigned to another prisoner, York, and she delves into his upbringing, revealing the brutality and deprivation that led to the crime for which he has been sentenced, although York himself wants no part in the efforts to have his sentence commuted.
Added by 6 of our members. The Enchanted A novel by Rene Denfeld. A wondrous and redemptive debut novel, set in a stark world where evil and magic coincide, The Enchanted combines the empathy and lyricism of Alice Sebold with the dark, imaginative power of Stephen King This is an enchanted place. The enchanted place is an ancient stone prison, viewed through the eyes of a death row inmate who finds escape in his books and in re-imagining life around him, weaving a fantastical story of the people he observes and the world he inhabits. Fearful and reclusive, he senses what others cannot. Though bars confine him every minute of every day, he marries visions of golden horses running beneath the prison, heat flowing like molten metal from their backs with the devastating violence of prison life.