Monday, April 6, 2009

book review: the ten-year nap by meg wolitzer

Lines worth remembering: "Later, when Jill tried to recreate the moment for Donald, she was unable to tell it n a way that gave it the real resonance is had possessed at the time." (p. 307)

My thoughts: The irony of this sentence, of course, is that Meg Wolitzer does not have this problem at all. I finished The Ten-Year Nap last week, but it's one of those books I've struggled with explaining why I loved it so much. Offering you a brief synopsis won't even begin to it justice. Yes, it's the story of four fortyish women of the means to stop working to care for their children. Their children, however, are now to the age they don't require constant care, and the women find themselves differently struggling with their place. To me, these women together represent the cumulative struggles, both emotional, financial and professional of so many women. Wolitzer alternates chapters with stories of these women's mothers and others from prior generation to highlight their hopes and dreams for their daughters. It's a moving look at feminism and women's lives over the years. As a twenty-something feminist, I was surprised to find myself understanding the mothers' generation more. As the book continued to shed light into these womens' lives, however, Wolitzer's nuanced message of individuality in feminism shone through brilliantly. I loved it, plain and simple. My words can't do this book justice, because it's complexity is in its scope. It's a brilliant book, and the plot is not what the book itself is truly about.

Many, many thanks to Penguin for letting me review this book. To supplement my review, check out their description of this truly wonderful novel.

Rating: 5 out of 5

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