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This novel is so amazing and so beautifully narrated that I have listened to it twice. Perhaps one must be middle aged to appreciate the wisdom -- both tragic and comic -- of Jane Smiley's perspective on a traditional relationship lasting many years. This book is profound in its delineation of the ambivalence and the ambiguity implicit in marriage and the slow coming to consciousness of its 'heroine'.
This story is a slow burn of a woman trapped by the expectations of society - a society that devalues unmarried women, that considers men's intellect superior and allows people to be labeled and robbed of reaching their potential. The narrative is also a slow burn, plodding on with a building sense of helplessness and hopelessness. Expertly narrated by Kate Reading.