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The ladies' lending library : a novel
Janice Kulyk Keefer
Adult Fiction KEEFER

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From Publishers' Weekly:

The Ukrainian-Canadian housewives of idyllic 1960s Kalyna Beach, Ontario, find that show business scandal has far-reaching power in this latest from Canadian novelist Keefer, her first published in the U.S. While their husbands work, former model Sonia Martyn and friends spend the summer of 1963 watching their children on the beach and reading racy books to discuss over Friday cocktails, while the kids test the limits of their mothers' supervisory skills and traditional Ukrainian values. Moms and daughters alike have become enchanted by the new film Cleopatra and the scandalous love affair between stars Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. When the beautiful, sad wife of a local millionaire embarks on her own misbegotten affair, the ladies of Kalyna Beach feel their familiar world shift, opening up novel possibilities for freedom and betrayal. Keefer neatly captures the security and claustrophobia of immigrant communities, but diffuses her story's power with too many points of view. Just as the ladies' books cannot match the drama in their lives, this story only begins to capture the personal cost of immigration and assimilation. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Verdict: Keefer focuses too much on the adult characters, and her conclusion feels rushed. Only for the most ardent fans of women's fiction and fodder for Lifetime channel movies. Background: Set in 1963 in a fictional summer beach colony in eastern Canada, Toronto-based Keefer's first novel to be published in the United States in 15 years follows the day-to-day pursuits and inner monologs of a group of well-to-do first-generation Ukrainian Canadian wives as they reminisce about missed opportunities, resent their children, and wait for unsatisfying weekend visits from their husbands. Keefer shifts the narrative throughout the book to include the thoughts and exploits of the women's children; these sections are more original than the main narrative.-Julie Elliott, Indiana Univ. Lib., South Bend (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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