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The senator's wife
Sue Miller
Adult Fiction MILLER

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Bestselling author Miller (The Good Mother; When I Was Gone) returns with a rich, emotionally urgent novel of two women at opposite stages of life who face parallel dilemmas. Meri, the young, sexy wife of a charismatic professor, occupies one wing of a New England house with her husband. An unexpected pregnancy forces her to reassess her marriage and her childhood of neglect. Delia, her elegant neighbor in the opposite wing, is the long-suffering wife of a notoriously philandering retired senator. The couple have stayed together for his career and still share an occasional, deeply intense tryst. The women's routines continue on either side of the wall that divides their homes, and the two begin to flit back and forth across the porch and into each others physical and psychological spaces. A steady tension builds to a bruising denouement. The clash, predicated on Delia's husband's compulsive behavior and on Meri's lack of boundaries, feels too preordained. But Miller's incisive portrait of the complex inner lives of her characters and her sharp manner of taking them through conflicts make for an intense read. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Miller is one of the finest writers of women-centered literary fiction around, but this is far from her best work. Part of the problem is that the first third of the book is all narrative, recounting the lives of three couples over 20 years. These are women who take their wedding vows so seriously that they overlook their husbands' affairs. Blair Brown, by far the most sensitive narrator of contemporary women's fiction with a light twist, does her best and then some--she attempts to keep up a lively pace throughout this long history, but it isn't easy. Fortunately, once the dialog gets going, she runs with it. Brown's ability to assign or clue into a character's emotions with slight shifts in voice is at its best here, and emotion is the guiding thread throughout; a problem audiobook, then, but a perfect match with the reader. Any library with Miller's previous books will want to add this to their collection.--Rochelle Ratner, formerly with Soho Weekly News, New York (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Meri
Husband is a professor; unplanned pregnancy forces her to reassess her marriage; had a childhood of neglect.

Delia Naughton
Elegant; Meri's neighbor; married to a retired senator who is constantly unfaithful; stays with her husband because of his career.

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