The Widower's Tale (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Sep 7, 2010 - Fiction - 448 pages
43 Reviews

In a historic farmhouse outside Boston, seventy-year-old Percy Darling is settling happily into retirement: reading novels, watching old movies, and swimming naked in his pond. His routines are disrupted, however, when he is persuaded to let a locally beloved preschool take over his barn. As Percy sees his rural refuge overrun by children, parents, and teachers, he must reexamine the solitary life he has made in the three decades since the sudden death of his wife. No longer can he remain aloof from his community, his two grown daughters, or, to his shock, the precarious joy of falling in love.
 
One relationship Percy treasures is the bond with his oldest grandchild, Robert, a premed student at Harvard. Robert has long assumed he will follow in the footsteps of his mother, a prominent physician, but he begins to question his ambitions when confronted by a charismatic roommate who preaches—and begins to practice—an extreme form of ecological activism, targeting Boston’s most affluent suburbs.
 
Meanwhile, two other men become fatefully involved with Percy and Robert: Ira, a gay teacher at the preschool, and Celestino, a Guatemalan gardener who works for Percy’s neighbor, each one striving to overcome a sense of personal exile. Choices made by all four men, as well as by the women around them, collide forcefully on one lovely spring evening, upending everyone’s lives, but none more radically than Percy’s.
 
With equal parts affection and satire, Julia Glass spins a captivating tale about the loyalties, rivalries, and secrets of a very particular family. Yet again, she plumbs the human heart brilliantly, dramatically, and movingly.




From the Hardcover edition.
  

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Glass has crafted a beautifully complicated plot. - LibraryThing
Disappointing ending. - LibraryThing
For plot summary, you can read other reviews. - LibraryThing

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Betty.Ann.Beam - LibraryThing

I would highly recommend this book. It's not an entertaining page turner but the plot moves along fairly well. There are many interrelated characters in this book and sometimes Glass is guilty of too ... Read full review

Review: The Widower's Tale

User Review  - Andre Dumas - Goodreads

Great characters, great writing but I did find there to be one too many 'hot button' topics which made the entire book feel a little stretched. I'd have preferred to stay with Percy for the duration ... Read full review

All 2 reviews »

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
2
Section 2
3
Section 3
34
Section 4
50
Section 5
74
Section 6
116
Section 7
135
Section 8
149
Section 14
257
Section 15
272
Section 16
287
Section 17
307
Section 18
320
Section 19
332
Section 20
338
Section 21
351

Section 9
163
Section 10
189
Section 11
202
Section 12
231
Section 13
246
Section 22
368
Section 23
378
Section 24
403
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Julia Glass is the author of Three Junes, winner of the 2002 National Book Award for Fiction; The Whole World Over; and I See You Everywhere, winner of the 2009 Binghamton University John Gardner Book Award. She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. Her short fiction has won several prizes, and her personal essays have been widely anthologized. She lives in Massachusetts with her family.




From the Hardcover edition.

Bibliographic information