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1 Beaverton Literature- A to Z

The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D.

by

The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D. Cover

ISBN13: 9780307887801
ISBN10: 0307887804
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Before there were blogs, there were journals. And in them we’d write as we really were, not as we wanted to appear. But there comes a day when journals outlive us. And with them, our secrets.

 

   Summer vacation on Great Rock Island was supposed to be a restorative time for Kate, who’d lost her close friend Elizabeth in a sudden accident. But when she inherits a trunk of Elizabeth's journals, they reveal a woman far different than the cheerful wife and mother Kate thought she knew. 

   The complicated portrait of Elizabeth—her troubled upbringing, and her route to marriage and motherhood—makes Kate question not just their friendship, but her own deepest beliefs about loyalty and honesty at a period of uncertainty in her own marriage. 

   The more Kate reads, the more she learns the complicated truth of who Elizabeth really was, and rethinks her own choices as a wife, mother, and professional, and the legacy she herself would want to leave behind. When an unfamiliar man’s name appears in the pages, Kate realizes the extent of what she didn’t know about her friend, including where she was really going on the day she died. 

   Set in the anxious summer after the September 11th attacks, this story of two women—their friendship, their marriages, private ambitions and fears—considers the aspects of ourselves we show and those we conceal, and the repercussions of our choices.

“I loved this bittersweet novel, which manages to be both a compelling mystery and a wise meditation on friendship, marriage and motherhood in an age of great anxiety. Bernier will have you thinking about her characters long after you've turned the final page.”

—J. Courtney Sullivan, New York Times bestselling author of Maine

Review:

"When Elizabeth dies in a plane crash a month before 9/11, her will designates her friend Kate as the recipient of her lifelong journals, in this tepid debut. Kate spends her family vacation during the summer of 2002 reading through Elizabeth's journals, discovering the truth about the woman she thought she had known. Elizabeth's history is full of secrets: a childhood accident, a decision to abandon her artistic studies to care for her mother, her relationship with her husband, and most curiously, the reason she was on that ill-fated August 2001 flight. Other than her time-appropriate anxieties about terrorism and loss, Kate is a pedestrian character, with quiet conflicts about her workaday marriage and thoughts of exchanging motherhood for a return to her career as a pastry chef. As a character, Elizabeth has more potential, but Kate's recaps of important events in Elizabeth's life, interspersed with brief passages from the diaries, feel journalistic and unfinished, like notes from a character study. Moments of beauty and depth of spirit will appeal to readers interested in secrets revealed, but the novel is slow and relies too heavily on introspection. Agent: Julie Barer. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

About the Author

NICHOLE BERNIER is a writer for magazines including Elle, Self, Health, Men’s Journal and Boston Magazine, and a 14-year contributing editor with Conde Nast Traveler, where she was previously on staff as the golf and ski editor and a columnist. She is a founder of the literary website BeyondTheMargins.com, and lives outside of Boston with her husband and five children.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Kathy Crowley, February 9, 2013 (view all comments by Kathy Crowley)
I love how this book gets into the complexities not only of friendships and marital relationships, but also how these dynamics play into the daily lives of characters adjusting their plans and dreams to the realities of child rearing and, sometimes, tragedy. I also love how this novel paints the friendship between Elizabeth and Kate: not the simpler best friends forever/soul-sisters story, but the more real dynamic of friends feeling close, but also hiding things from one another. On top of all that, there is the mystery: Elizabeth has died unexpectedly and has left her life-long collection of journals in the hands of her friend Kate. Elizabeth's grieving husband is angry, Kate and her husband are struggling through their own issues, and the journals suggest that there was a lot more going on with Elizabeth than anyone realized. Great stuff.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780307887801
Author:
Bernier, Nichole
Publisher:
Crown Publishing Group (NY)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Publication Date:
20120631
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
9.5 x 6.4 x 1.1 in 1.1563 lb

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Contemporary Women
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Family Life

The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D. Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$4.95 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Crown Publishing Group (NY) - English 9780307887801 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "When Elizabeth dies in a plane crash a month before 9/11, her will designates her friend Kate as the recipient of her lifelong journals, in this tepid debut. Kate spends her family vacation during the summer of 2002 reading through Elizabeth's journals, discovering the truth about the woman she thought she had known. Elizabeth's history is full of secrets: a childhood accident, a decision to abandon her artistic studies to care for her mother, her relationship with her husband, and most curiously, the reason she was on that ill-fated August 2001 flight. Other than her time-appropriate anxieties about terrorism and loss, Kate is a pedestrian character, with quiet conflicts about her workaday marriage and thoughts of exchanging motherhood for a return to her career as a pastry chef. As a character, Elizabeth has more potential, but Kate's recaps of important events in Elizabeth's life, interspersed with brief passages from the diaries, feel journalistic and unfinished, like notes from a character study. Moments of beauty and depth of spirit will appeal to readers interested in secrets revealed, but the novel is slow and relies too heavily on introspection. Agent: Julie Barer. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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