The Limits of Enchantment Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Limits of Enchantment

Fern Cullens comes of age in the 1960s. She has been raised by Mammy and everything she knows was taught to her by Mammy. Mammy is the town midwife, the herbal healer and the all around caretaker by those that will have her. But Mammy is dying and she is trying to prepare Fern for her death by telling her the recipes for baking cakes with love, for using different herbs for healing and the ways of the midwife.
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While Mammy is hospitalized, Fern tries to bring Mammy's old world ways to the 1960s. She enrolls in a midwife course to get a certificate and begins classes. She struggles with making ends meet because Mammy has always taken care of that. Any 'healing' or 'helping' that was done by Mammy was paid however much they could. Everyone is instructed to leave the money in an envelope on the mantle.

Fern struggles with the illness of her only true family and friend, Mammy, and with the deception of some of the town's people. Some in the town want new science and medicine; they want to remove Fern and Mammy and their strange ways from their property and town but others are true friends, although it is difficult to know truth from deception.

Fern starts to seek the help, trust and counsel of others - the hippies that move in on a communal farm down the road and some nearby families that Mammy had treated for years, and faces the truth about Mammy's powers.

Once Mammy dies, people of the town that loved Mammy and Fern make their own magic - by asking Fern to bake the her pies.
The review of this Book prepared by Jody T. Bixby

Chapter Analysis of The Limits of Enchantment

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 10%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 30%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 40%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 20% Tone of book    -   very upbeat FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   fantasy story on current Earth Coming of age    -   Yes Youngster becomes    -   a powerful magician Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Identity:    -   Female Profession/status:    -   student Age:    -   a teen If magical mental powers:    -   healing


Terrain    -   Forests Earth setting:    -   20th century Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   descript of kissing    -   descript of touching personal anatomy    -   descript. of private male anat.    -   rape/molest (yeech!) How much dialogue?    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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Graham Joyce Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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