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One Minus One (Nancy Pearl's Book Lust Rediscoveries) by [MacDougall, Ruth Doan]
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One Minus One (Nancy Pearl's Book Lust Rediscoveries) Kindle Edition

2.9 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews

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Length: 184 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

About the Author

Ruth Doan MacDougall, whose father wrote novels and hiking books, began writing stories of her own at the age of six in her hometown of Laconia, New Hampshire. She never stopped. Today, she is the respected author of deeply felt novels about the lives of women, including The Cheerleader, her acclaimed coming-of-age bestseller about a teenage girl in the 1950s, which launched her acclaimed Snowy Series. A recipient of the New Hampshire Writers’ Project’s Lifetime Achievement Award, MacDougall continues to write novels and to update her late father’s hiking books. She is happy to say that she is still madly in love with her husband of fifty-five years and explains that her novel One Minus One came about when she tried to imagine what her life would be like if they ever divorced. She lives in Center Sandwich, New Hampshire.

Nancy Pearl is a librarian and lifelong reader. She regularly comments on books on National Public Radio’s Morning Edition. Her books include 2003’s Book Lust: Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment and Reason, 2005’s More Book Lust: 1,000 New Reading Recommendations for Every Mood, Moment and Reason; Book Crush: For Kids and Teens: Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment, and Interest, published in 2007, and 2010’s Book Lust To Go: Recommended Reading for Travelers, Vagabonds, and Dreamers. Among her many awards and honors are the 2011 Librarian of the Year Award from Library Journal; the 2011 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association; the 2010 Margaret E. Monroe Award from the Reference and Users Services Association of the American Library Association; and the 2004 Women's National Book Association Award, given to "a living American woman who …has done meritorious work in the world of books beyond the duties or responsibilities of her profession or occupation."


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 578 KB
  • Print Length: 184 pages
  • Publisher: Amazon Publishing (19 Feb. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00A6TL6BC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #201,036 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By ElaineG TOP 100 REVIEWER on 21 Feb. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a story set at the end of the 1960s at a time when the Pill had revolutionised women's lives and given them the power to choose between having a family and a career; not to mention the shiny new labour saving gadgets which the women in the book seem to lust after. Very much character led, it tells the story of Emily, a 30 year old woman whose husband has just divorced her. We meet her as she is trying to put her life back together by taking a teaching job, living independently, and making friends amongst the female teachers she works with. We follow her and her friends and see how, although the times they were a changing, these women were really the last of a generation in a way, and they have to make those decisions about marriage and family versus work, and sometimes they don't seem to be sure exactly what they do want with the grass always looking greener on the other side of the fence; the story being set at a time before the concept of "having it all".

It is especially hard for Emily, mourning her lost marriage amongst a group of friends who seem determined to marry themselves and start families. She doesn't even have anyone who can sympathise with her, as she is in fact the only person in the book who has gone through a divorce.

It did take me a couple of chapters to get into the book, but once I did I was drawn into Emily's world. She could be a little exasperating at times and seemed to be scared and dithering about a lot of things, although it has to be said she had come out of a marriage at a time when the woman's place was still in the kitchen to a large extent, and certain jobs were a man's responsibility, which could probably explain her fear of the automatic car wash!
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By Eleanor TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 6 Feb. 2013
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Emily Bean is a thirty year old woman trying to start a new life after her divorce from David. David and Emily had been together since high school and suddenly every experience is new: sometimes frightening, sometimes exciting. Emily is reluctant to ask a direct question of anyone, dodges questions from others with 'well', and is worried about getting drunk lest 'chatty Emily' surfaces. However, despite and because of these flaws she is an engaging and likeable character and one reads on, desperately hoping she will get over the love she still feels for David and start living.

"One Minus One" was first published in 1971 and the book vividly evokes that time. Emily has been liberated by the pill and the other new freedoms granted to women, but marriage is still something that most of the female characters aspire to and feel incomplete without. This sense of changing times is reinforced by the book's setting, a group of dingy New Hampshire towns surrounded by countryside which is gradually being encroached on by cheap building, tacky tourism, and the sterile signs of consumerism.

"One Minus One" is a relatively short book with great characters which engrossed me from start to finish.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
One Minus One is one of a series of rediscovered out of print books. I found others to be excellent; this is a good book but not in the same class. It is set in the early 70s and concerns a woman still in love with her husband who has left her for another woman. She is a teacher in a new area and makes friends, finds a new lover and who knows, at the end of the book, it is possible she will end up being able to put a lost man out of her mind (or then again she won't). I would say it is tonalities and be more interesting to those female readers who will appreciate the emotional complexity - or should we say mixed upness - of the principal character.
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By Alison on 18 Jun. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was an ok book, but very slow. Nothing truly happens in it, reminding me a little of some Margaret Atwood books I have read. While I love character driven books I do like my characters to evolve, change and grow. While there is a little growth at the end of this story, I'm not left truly convinced the lead character had really moved on from where she is emotionally at the start of the book.

Disappointing.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It's not often I fail to read a book to the end because I have to know what happens, but with this I couldn't care less. If you like to read lists of what's on a bar, or what's in each of 3 bedrooms this is for you. The main character is a woman whose husband has left her - frankly I'm not surprised.
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By Brett H TOP 50 REVIEWER on 8 May 2016
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is one of the Book Lust Rediscoveries series which takes and reprints novels from 1960-2000 chosen by NPR commentators and author Nancy Pearl, who also writes an introduction for each.

This novel is set I the late 1960s. Emily Bean is recently - and unwillingly - divorced by her husband David. She has to give up her chosen career as a struggling author and return to teaching so as to support herself. She arrives in New Hampshire and discovers the difficulties of single life and dating after years of marriage to her High School sweetheart. Warren, local Radio morning DJ is her first date and then she becomes involved with Cliff, her Head of Department in her new school. Things seem to go well with him but then Emily has an unexpected encounter with her ex on a beach and old longings rear up for her. As her relationship with Cliff moves to its conclusion, Emily must decide whether to move on with her life and love or continue hoping for a past, which looks as if it is drifting further and further from her grasp.

This novel is neatly summed up by Nancy Pearl in her excellent introduction: Who is to say which offers the best guide on how to live your life, your heart or your head? The vignettes on life in late 1960s New England and the poignant way MacDougall draws her characters really make this novel. A good re-publication choice that makes me want to discover more MacDougall novels from the past.
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