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A Free Woman Paperback – 7 Feb 2002

5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks; New edition edition (7 Feb. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340793899
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340793893
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 12.7 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 990,987 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

'Clever, humane, elegant and wise. Like the Dutch masters, who saw beauty in a woman sewing, or cracking eggs, and whose calm elegance her prose recalls, she sees the fragility and strangeness that are present in even the most commonplace of lives, if only one knows how to look.' (The Times 2001-09-01)

'Families are funny things - in real life, as in the novels of Libby Purves. . . Still, all's well that ends well - as things usually do in the novels of the perceptive Ms Purves.' (Evening Mail 2001-09-01)

'Purves tackles a number of topical issues head-on, while astutely depicting family life' (Woman & Home 2001-09-01)

'Most gripping . . . erupts with extraordinary and unexpected force.' (David Shukman, Daily Mail 2001-09-01)

'A satisfying cocktail of sexual politics and common sense.' (East Anglian Daily Times 2001-09-01)

'Calm eye, coherent thought and deft plotting . . . A thoughtful and compelling read with a wise message for modern parents.' (Wigan Evening Post 2002-02-16)

Book Description

A very modern love story, exploring the lives - and traps - facing women of three generations. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dr. S. A. Dalton-brown on 29 Aug. 2002
Format: Paperback
Libby Purves was new to me - I picked this one up more in hope than in anticipation, and was gripped for most of the evening. The plot has some craftily contrived moments of high drama, and a viewpoint which isn't limited, thankfully, to the usual domestic or city sphere, but the main suprise was Purves's style. Wonderfully restrained, subtly nuanced - reading this was like listening to a piece of Bach - not a note wrong. I didn't even feel that the ending was a cop-out, which in a lesser novel would be an easy criticism. I'm now tracking down all Purves' other works to see if she can keep up the standard.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sterile on 3 May 2009
Format: Paperback
Good non assuming beach read or a cosy fireside book. Not really any super drama moments or high end bitchyness but a gentle family saga.

Sarah and Leo have been married for about 17 years when Sarah's sister Maggie comes back to the UK for a short stay before jetting off again, this time to China on her backpacking life with no strings - A Free Woman.

Sarah is everything Maggie is not, A wife, mother and keeper of a mundane job in a Vet's Surgery. Sarah could secretly be a little jealous of her younger sisters adventures when it was she who started family life a little earlier than she intended with her husband Leo.

Sarah loves her sister and wants her to stay on in the small market town a while longer and help Leo run his book shop in the high street. She feels that she doesn't see enough of Maggie and wants someone to share experiences with - to reminiese about their past. The kids love Auntie Maggie and hold her in awe with god like quality.

Revelations come to pass, most on the tip of the tongue or said in a state of high drama which Sarah finds very difficult to deal with. She snubs her sister (again maybe a little jealuousy?)and Maggie is forced to take a path that screams at her to break away and run.....

I am in two minds about this book. It's typical Purves but the plot could be seen to be almost transparant and she has written better, more satisfying reads.
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By Miss Betty on 11 Sept. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is just a wonderful story, wild Maggie roaming the world doing as she pleases then bought down to earth with a bump but making the best of it when her world comes tumbling down. Great interactions with the family and her desperate struggle to stay independent and free. Makes you realise that happiness is not about status and possessions but about what makes you happy, friends, families and that life takes you where you're meant to be - even if it's not what you had planned - a great read!
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By bernie on 23 April 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Another fine book this time by that well known author Libby Purves. Again this a replacement copy of this book where the original
after much reading needed renewal.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am enjoying the novel, Libby Purves is definitely is one of my favourite authors, and its an excellent story.
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