The Memory Keeper's Daughter

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Thorndike Press, 2005 - Fiction - 712 pages
305 Reviews
Award-winning writer Kim Edwards's The Memory Keeper's Daughter is a brilliantly crafted, completely riveting family drama that explores every mother's silent fear: what would happen if you lost your child, and she grew up without you? On a winter night in 1964, Dr. David Henry is forced by a blizzard to deliver his own twins. His son, born first, is perfectly healthy. Yet when his daughter is born, he sees immediately that she has Down's syndrome. Rationalizing it as a need to protect Norah, his wife, he makes a split second decision that will alter of their lives forever. He asks his nurse to take the baby away to an institution and never to reveal the secret. But Caroline, the nurse, cannot leave the infant. Instead, she disappears into another city to raise the child herself. So begins this beautifully told story that unfolds over a quarter of a century--in which these two families, ignorant of each other, are yet bound by David Henry's fateful decision that long-ago winter night. Rich, compulsively readable, and deeply moving, The Memory Keeper's Daughter captures the way life takes unexpected turns, and how the mysterious ties that hold a family together help us survive the heartache that hold a occurs when long-buried secrets burst into the open. It is an astonishing tale of redemptive love.

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5 stars
86
4 stars
88
3 stars
87
2 stars
38
1 star
6

Interesting premise, well written. - LibraryThing
The plot was overblown, the writing was bad. - LibraryThing
An intriguing story told in luscious prose. - LibraryThing
Too wordy didn't care for the long drawn out plot. - LibraryThing
I enjoyed this novel and found it quite a page turner. - LibraryThing
The pace also dragged a lot. - LibraryThing

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - hemlokgang - LibraryThing

Set between 1964 and 1989, between Lexington, KY and Pittsburgh, PA, this story is about the futility of trying to control life. The reader is witness to the outcomes set in motion after the birth of ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - KR_Patterson - LibraryThing

The only reason I even give this book 3 stars is because I can see that she's a good writer. I mean, her words are nice, pretty, thought-provoking. However, the story itself was, I felt, a waste of ... Read full review

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Contents

Section 1
6
Section 2
7
Section 3
11

35 other sections not shown

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About the author (2005)

Kim Edwards received an MFA in Fiction from Colgate University and an MA in Linguistics from the University of Iowa. After completing her graduate work, she and her husband taught on the rural east coast of Malaysia, then in a small city an hour south of Tokyo, and finally in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. While in Asia, she started writing and publishing short fiction. Her story, Sky Juice, won the Nelson Algren Award. Her stories and essays have appeared in Ploughshares, Zoetrope, Anteaus, Story, and The Paris Review and have received a National Magazine Award for Excellence in Fiction and a Pushcart Prize. Her other works include the short story collection The Secrets of a Fire King and a novel The Memory Keeper's Daughter, which won the Kentucky Literary Award for Fiction in 2005. She also received a Whiting Writers' Award in 2002. She is a graduate of the Iowa's Writers' Workshop and currently teaches writing at the University of Kentucky.

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