by Dare DeLano
Three strong Southern women -- twelve-year-old Len, her mother Cora, and her Aunt Jean -- grapple with love and loss in this poignant tale set on a hardscrabble cattle ranch in a small Texas town. Len yearns to find the father who abandoned her, and after a chance encounter with a country music star who she suspects is him, she embarks on a life-altering journey to find the truth about her past. At the same time, Cora and Jean must deal with another shocking family betrayal that complicates everything. Told in turns by these three remarkable women, Abilene explores the boundaries of love and the transformative power of self-discovery.
Dare DeLano holds an MFA in creative writing from Fairfield University. Her work has been short-listed as a finalist for the Faulkner-Wisdom Creative Writing Competition, and her children’s book Odus and the Long Way Home won the San Diego Book Award. Her work has been published in “A Year in Ink Anthology, Vol. 10, San Diego Writers, Ink, and has been exhibited in the San Diego Central Library’s Local Author Exhibition. Dare lives in San Diego, but her heart remains in the south. This is her first novel.
“Dare DeLano’s lush prose and keen eye reveals the hidden magic inside a dusty Texas ranch community. At its heart are three generations of strong, clear-sighted women. When young Len sees signs that could lead to the father she’d always wondered about, the deepest magic unfolds. Told with passion and humor, Abilene will move you to tears and fill you with the knowledge that in this world, with all its difficulties, anything is possible.”
—Karen Osborn, author of Patchwork and most recently The Music Book
“In Abilene, Dare DeLano has pulled off the most remarkable of feats. She has recreated for the reader the wondrous experience of falling, body and soul, into a grand love. This masterfully paced novel will magnetize you to its complex, vivid characters. And the twists and turns of DeLano’s poignant narrative will make you forget, in just the way a great love makes you forget, that anything else in the world matters.”
—Rachel Basch, author of The Listener
Release Date: 11/1/2023