Private life

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A riveting new novel from the Pulitzer Prize-winner that traverses the intimate landscape of one woman's life, from the 1880s to World War II. Margaret Mayfield is nearly an old maid at twenty-seven in post-Civil War Missouri when she marries Captain Andrew Jackson Jefferson Early. He's the most famous man their small town has ever produced: a naval officer and a brilliant astronomer--a genius who, according to the local paper, has changed the universe. Margaret's mother calls the match "a piece of luck." Margaret is a good girl who has been raised to marry, yet Andrew confounds her expectations from the moment their train leaves for his naval base in faraway California. Soon she comes to understand that his devotion to science leaves precious little room for anything, or anyone, else. When personal tragedies strike and when national crises envelop the country, Margaret stands by her husband. But as World War II approaches, Andrew's obsessions take a different, darker turn, and Margaret is forced to reconsider the life she has so carefully constructed. Private Life is a beautiful evocation of a woman's inner world: of the little girl within the hopeful bride, of the young woman filled with yearning, and of the faithful wife who comes to harbor a dangerous secret. But it is also a heartbreaking portrait of marriage and the mysteries that endure even in lives lived side by side; a wondrously evocative historical panorama; and, above all, a masterly, unforgettable novel from one of our finest storytellers.
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ISBN:
9781400040605
9780307715340
9781602858152
9780307715333
9780307593788
9780307715319
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Grouped Work ID 04bb6938-08a7-5d66-3a3f-37916989c6f8
Grouping Title private life
Grouping Author smiley jane
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2019-05-25 22:33:59PM
Last Indexed 2019-05-25 22:59:47PM

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auth_author2 Reading, Kate.
author Jane Smiley
author2-role Reading, Kate.
author_display Jane Smiley
available_at_ex Essex Library Association
detailed_location_ex Essex Adult Fiction
display_description

Here is the powerful, deeply affecting story of one Margaret Mayfield, from her childhood in post–Civil War Missouri to California in the throes of World War II. When Margaret marries Captain Andrew Jackson Jefferson Early at the age of twenty-seven, she narrowly avoids condemning herself to life as an old maid. Instead, knowing little about marriage and even less about her husband, she moves with Andrew to his naval base in California. Margaret stands by Andrew during tragedies both historical and personal, but as World War II approaches and the secrets of her husband's scientific and academic past begin to surface, she is forced to reconsider the life she had so carefully constructed.

A riveting and nuanced novel of marriage and family, Private Life reveals the mysteries of intimacy and the anonymity that endures even in lives lived side by side.

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isbn 9780307593788, 9780307715319, 9780307715333, 9780307715340, 9781400040605, 9781602858152
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primary_isbn 9781400040605
publishDate 2010
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subject_facet Audiobooks, Large type books, Marriage -- Fiction, Military spouses -- Fiction, Officers' spouses -- Fiction, Psychological fiction, United States. -- Navy -- Officers -- Fiction
title_display Private life : a novel
title_full Private Life, Private life : [sound recording] [a novel] / by Jane Smiley, Private life : a novel / Jane Smiley, Private life [sound recording] : a novel / Jane Smiley, Private life/ : a novel / Jane Smiley
title_short Private life :
title_sub
topic_facet Audiobooks, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Large type books, Literature, Marriage, Military spouses, Officers, Officers' spouses, Psychological fiction, Romance