Wednesday, January 10, 2007

book review: memory keeper's daughter by kim edwards


memory keeper's daughter, by kim edwards is about a physician in the 1960's who delivers twins by his wife during a snowstorm by themselves with a single nurse, who is all at once assistant, witness, and accomplice. one twin is a healthy boy; and one twin is a daughter with downs' syndrome. unbeknownst to his wife, he gives up the baby to an institution, and the nurse then runs away to another state to raise the child on her own. After this dramatic start the story builds on how this moment becomes a turning point in all their lives, haunting and magnifying their lives in ways they as participants cannot realize: the father with the secret sin, the mother with a sense of loss that never leaves, a distant son, and a foster mother and daughter whose love never makes anyone question their relationship.

what i like: an unexpected bonus to the story is that a good bulk of it takes place in lexington, kentucky and some parts in louisville - both places near n' dear to my heart i appreciated the author's trueness in her sense of history, taking into account politics, music, and society; one could step into the environment of this world she was creating. her attempt at following the parallel strands of life was well done as well (really difficult to do, i would think).

final thoughts: the story was good, but didn't grab me. worth borrowing at the library, not to buy. it was a good holiday read - er...for some. again, i loved the local-yokel connections.

1 comment:

Andi said...

UK's website has been featuring Kim Edwards on the homepage. I didn't realize the story actually took place in Lexington, that's pretty cool.

I added the book to my Amazon list. I'm interested in reading it, if for no other reason than for the local history. Thanks for the review!