Seven Wives: A Romance : a Novel

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University of Alabama Press, 1994 - Fiction - 181 pages
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A deliciously satirical postmodern romance, Seven Wives reimagines the search for an enduring passionate love. The too-much-loved narrator, Jack, an extension of the everyman hero of Baumbach's novel Reruns marries seven women, including a childhood sweetheart, an older woman who turns out to be an unacceptably near relation, the loveliest woman in the world, a woman so fat that sex with her becomes impossibly difficult, and a woman who confuses violence and love. Jack's quest for the perfect marriage is, of course, doomed to failure and ultimately leads him to the edge of madness, but it also produces seven bizarrely interesting near-misses along the way.
From his home in New York City, Jack tells his story after the fact, as a way of reclaiming himself. He obsesses not only about his search for the right woman but also about his quixotic pursuit of a version (or versions) of the American dream. Jack moves from cabdriver, to actor, to scriptwriter for pornographic movies, to entrepreneur, to Hollywood producer. Seven Wives treats marriage and career as inseparable pursuits on the same road to success. The two abiding issues of all of Baumbach's fiction - the erratic workings of the imagination and the even more erratic workings of the human heart - appear in their purest form in his latest novel.

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User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Baumbach (Separate Hours, 1990; The Life and Times of Major Fiction, 1987) at his most amusing in a satire on the battle of the sexes that focuses largely on the male mind not quite up to the task of ... Read full review

Seven wives: a romance: a novel

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

If the mind were to dwell for too long on the ambivalence of love and relationships, one could end up inhabiting the nightmare world of Baumbach's latest novel. Here, the libido is as dangerous as ... Read full review

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