- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC; Paperback Edition, First Printing edition (20 April 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 140880431X
- ISBN-13: 978-1408804315
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 689,313 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Senator's Wife Paperback – 20 Apr 2009
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'An incredible story of the dangers of trying to live lives through others. Perfect book-club material' Easy Living 'Shock, deceit, desire and despair come together at once in a way that feels simply like fate A clever storyteller with a penchant for the unexpected' New York Times 'A complex, rich, haunting novel of marital love and its complications' Woman & Home 'This addictive read had me biting my lip with foreboding' Eve
About the Author
Sue Miller was born in Chicago in 1943. She is the bestselling author of eight previous novels including The Good Mother, While I Was Gone, The Distinguished Guest and Lost in the Forest, and of the acclaimed memoir The Story of My Father. She serves as the chair of PEN, New England. Sue Miller lives in Boston, Massachusetts.
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Top Customer Reviews
Delia is the more likeable of the two women and for some time I felt that Meri wasn't adding much to the book other than another perspective on Delia, but ultimately their lives become entwined and common themes develop. Although Meri is a newly-wed, she is aged in her late 30s (presumably to make some events that occur later in the book more credible), and yet she has the naievity and self-absorption of a younger woman.
Even though I didn't particularly warm to either woman, I enjoyed this book very much and read it quickly. I could feel the tension building throughout and I wasn't sure how it would resolve itself. Some reviews that I had read talked about a twist at the end which I think is over-selling it, but it does build to a climax. However I also felt that the ending was over-explained and that Meri's motivations were spelled out in a way that didn't feel convincing (nor necessary). This would be a good choice for a book club as there's plenty to discuss.
This is the first book that I've read by Sue Miller, but her writing reminded me in many ways of Anne Tyler, whose writing I love.
Ok, so aside from all that, it was so good, I want to sum up the whole story right here in case for some reason you don't take my advice and read it. I want you to get a glimpse of a good book if your stack of 'to-reads' are too high and you don't think this should make the cut. But I won't do that, but will tell you some of the wonderful themes to pique your interest.
I only recommend this book to women, but if you are a man and read it, my hat goes off to you. You will undoubtedly benefit from a woman's perspective, albeit maybe not the most important woman in your life's perspective. I digress. One theme is women as caretakers. I never saw myself in this role before this book. It is as if our whole lives follow a circuit of care taking, from a little girl and caring for your dolls, cats, dogs, friends; and then you become a woman and take care of your children for at least 5 years, and then just when you think you have time for a career of your own, it is time for your parents. Once you give all that, then you become a grandparent yourself and now you thoroughly enjoy caring for your grandchildren. This was not expressed in the book, but I came to all these conclusions on the side.
Lastly it makes you appreciate the relationship between one generation of women to another. It makes you appreciate the wisdom of the older women in your life and the sacrifices they made.
I could not quite understand why Meri was so drawn to Delia nor Meri's ambivalence about her own marriage nor her willingness to be somewhat overpowered by Nathan. I agree with the reviewer that said Meri added little to the book. It also has a dated feel about it.
The book starts more with Nathan's interest in the Senator but this is not followed up.
If I had known it was one of Richard and Judy's summer reads, I would probably have steered clear.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Well written but I found the main character almost despicable and the senator's wife, a tad pathetic.Published 12 months ago by Jenny Lavers-Mack
This is the first book of Sue Miller's that I have read and I won't rush out to read any more. But it hasn't put me off her either. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Closet Romantic
After a promising start in which a young couple move into a house next door to a former Senator, obviously based on one of the Kennedy clan, this novel just seizes up and becomes... Read morePublished 16 months ago by John Fitzpatrick
Delia is an unlikely character - far too faultless and perfect in her old age. Tom is too much of a cliche - a charming philanderer wit an aura of power - whilst Meri is lacking... Read morePublished on 1 April 2015 by Stuart C.
I was hoping that this would be a good book because it looked like it could have potential. The characters started out to be interesting, but it was unconvincing in the end. Read morePublished on 9 Oct. 2014 by Jennifer
I threw it in the bin. It was seedy and nasty. What kind of person would write like that? I'm referring to a chapter where the aging senator (a stroke victim and previous... Read morePublished on 11 Aug. 2014 by Amazon Customer
Sue Miller is another thoroughly reliable author, and this novel held me gripped throughout. The developing relationship between the two sets of neighbours - one newly married and... Read morePublished on 22 Jan. 2014 by Ms. A. Brooke
I usually read true crime so this was a far step for me but I found it in the Hotel Reception so thought Id give it a whirl. Read morePublished on 25 Sept. 2013 by anastasia
Very well written with well-observed detail and character descriptions. Just as in real life, there was plenty to like and dislike about all of the characters in the book. Read morePublished on 28 May 2012 by Amazon Customer