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Penguin, 1994 - Fiction - 390 pages
4 Reviews
These two unique novels tell the stories of Jack and Brenda Bowman during a rare weekend apart in their many years of marriage. Jack is at home coping with domestic crises and two uncouth adolescents, while immobilized by self-doubt and questioning his worth as a historian. Brenda, travelling alone for the first time, is in a strange city grappling with an array of emotions and toying with the idea of an affair. Intimate and insightful yet never sentimental, 'Happenstance' is a profound portrait of a marriage and the differences between the sexes that bring life - and a sense of isolation - into even the most loving of relationships.

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User Review  - thatotter - LibraryThing

Interesting premise...essentially two books in one, where you learn what happens during five days that a married couple spends away from each other, from each of their perspectives. The focus on ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - nocto - LibraryThing

Catching up with a big backlog of read books, hence very short writeups. This is two separate stories The Wife's Tale and The Husband's Tale set during the same period of time. It wasn't anything like ... Read full review

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About the author (1994)

Carol Shields is a writer and critic who was born on June 2, 1935 in Chicago and grew up in Illinois. Shields resided in Canada, where she was the Chancellor of the University of Winnipeg, and a professor at the University of Manitoba. Shields's first novel, Small Ceremonies, was published the week of her 40th birthday. Her other works of fiction include The Orange Fish, Larry's Party, Various Miracles, and The Stone Diaries, which received the Governor's General Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Shields has also been awarded the Canadian Bookseller's Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the CBC Prize for Drama. She died on July 16, 2003.

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