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Month in review

Reviews:
The Altman Code by Gayle Lynds
The Art World Dream by Eric Rudd
The Autobiography of Malcolm X retold by Alex Haley
Bare by Elisabeth Eaves
Being Committed by Anna Maxted
Chasing the Dime by Michael Connelly
A Christmas Story by Jean Shepherd
Galactic Pot-Healer by Philip K Dick
Giorgio by Anita Benarde
GIS: Socioeconimic Applications by David Martin
Good Bones and Simple Murders by Margaret Atwood
Headache Relief for Women by Alan M. Rapoport and Fred D. Sheftell
Housekeeping by Marilynn Robinson
In the Beginning... Was the Command Line by Neal Stephenson
The Last Camel Died at Noon by Elizabeth Peters
The Mother's Recompense by Edith Wharton
Mario and the Magician by Thomas Mann
Mrs. P's Journey by Sarah Hartley
Notes from Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky
Puckoon by Spike Milligan
Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain
Sacred Flowers by Roni Jay
Sacred Symbols: Ancient Egypt by Thames & Hudson
Something Rotten by Jasper Fforde
Spooky California by S. E. Schlosser
Trapped in Death Cave by Bill Wallace
The Virgin Blue by Tracy Chevalier
Ward No. Six by Anton Chekov

Miscellaneous
Baby Teeth and Eating
Dinner with Sean
Eight Facts About Me
Eight Months Old
Happy Monkey's Day
Harriet at 8 1/2 Months
Heat Wave
Ian's Teeth
Maxine Runs Cold
Maxine Runs Hot
New Jeans
New Postal Rates
No Swimming and Other Stuff
Swimming
Swimming Again
Toast
The Wooden Spoon

Vacation
Traffic
South Pasadena

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8


Comments for The Mother's Recompense

The Mother's RecompenseThe Mother's Recompense: 05/02/07

BookCrossing introduced me to Edith Wharton's books, first through a bookring (The Age of Innocence) and then through a wild catch (The Mother's Recompense) back in 2004. As a lover of old books, imagine how thrilled I was to find a 1925 copy with a BookCrossing label on it!

The Mother's Recompense is a story of mistakes and regrets. Kate Clephane lives in Europe in self imposed exile after a disastrous affair where she left her young husband and infant daughter home in New York. She lives a dull life on the French Rivera where the new scandals of her fellow ex-pats lets her forget her own transgressions.

Now twenty years later, her grown daughter calls her home to face the family, her memories and gives her a chance to start afresh as if nothing ever happened. Unfortunately her happy reunion is short lived as Anne, the daughter, announces her engagement to Kate's old lover.

The story sounds hokey but it's written with an unusual amount of frankness that one is drawn into Kate's world. The novel moves away from being just about Kate's mistakes but about her attempts at redemption and her desire to be a "good" mother to Anne.

While Wharton the narrator is frank with her audience about Kate's desires and transgressions, Kate finds herself incapable of admitting the truth to Anne both from an combined desire to protect her daughter and to avoid bringing further shame to the family.

The book has its flaws, mostly in its propensity for melodrama and sometimes Kate's indecision grows tiresome but overall I enjoyed The Mother's Recompense.

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