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The Eustace Diamonds by Anthony Trollope

Driver's Seat by Muriel Spark

Colors Changing Hue by Yvonne Porcella

The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon : A Novel by Tom Spanbauer

The Restless Supermarket by Ivan Vladislavic

Hitch 22 by Christopher Hitchens

Ten German novellas by Harry Steinhauer

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Member: arubabookwoman

CollectionsYour library (3,358), Read in 2014 (88), To Be Reviewed (110), Stalled (3), Kindle (796), Currently reading (3), To Be Read Soonest (149), Top of the Wishlist (4), Wishlist (297), Wishlist--Library Has (138), Wishlist--To Investigate--Recommendations (27), Wishlist--Global Reading (54), Wishlist--Prize Winners (4), 1001--New List (148), Wishlist--Nonfiction (24), Wishlist--Sci-Fi (9), Abandoned (1), Read in 2009 (90), Read 2010 (102), Read in 2011 (136), Read in 2012 (103), Read in 2013 (153), Backup Wishlist (9), Read But Not Owned (708), To Be Reread (83), The Novel 100 (71), To read (293), Second 100 (56), All collections (4,599)

Reviews186 reviews

TagsFiction (2,779), TBR (1,420), Nonfiction (985), Kindle (825), Collections Only (776), Bought 2013 (596), 1001 (542), Gave Away (527), wishlist (421), Read not rated (334) — see all tags

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About meMy favorite reads of 2008 were:

Rashomon by Akugatawa
The Little Girl Who Was Too Fond of Matches by Gaetan Soucy
The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein
Tree of Smoke by Dennis Johnson
Sacred Ground by Vikram Chandra
The Children by Edith Wharton
The Book of Ebenezer Le Page by E.G. Edwards
The Last September by Elizabeth Bowen
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
The Good Women of China by Xianan

My "desert island" books are:

The Raj Quartet by Paul Scott
Life: A User's Manuel by Georges Perec
The Goldbug Variations by Richard Powers
Buddenbrooks by Thomas Mann
Tristram Shandy by Lawrence Stern
Ada by Vladimir Nabokove
The Makioka Sisters by Tanizaki
Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
Little Dorritt by Charles Dickens
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner

Runner-up "desert island" books would include:

Vanity Fair by William Thackeray
A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth
Wild Swans by Chang
A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
Mr. Bridge/Mrs. Bridge by Evan Connell
The Manor and The Estate by I.B. Singer
Underworld by Don DeLillo
Absalom, Absalom by William Faulkner
The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien
Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy
David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
and I could go on and on!

About my libraryThe books in the "Your Library" collection are books I currently own which are on my shelves. Within this collection, those tagged TBR are those I have yet to read.

All other Collections are books I do not own. The collection "Borrowed Books and No Longer Have" are books I've read that I once owned and gave away, or that I got from the library. All other collections are books I'm interested in to one degree or the other, many of which are LT recommendations. The books in the "Look For Now" category are the books currently at the top of the wish list.

When I star books, 3 stars means a very good book, one that I would have no hesitation in recommending, especially if you are interested in the genre or subject of the book. 3 1/2 stars is a very good book, one that I especially liked and connected with. 4 stars is an excellent book, standing out above most other books, a book which will stay with me a long time and which I may want to reread. A 4 1/2 star book is a near perfect book, which will probably be around for a long time. A 5 star book is a book I expect to be around for all time.

A 2 1/2 star book can be either a perfectly good book which did not resonate with me, or a book with minor flaws. 2 stars is a book I did not like, or which had major flaws. 1 1/2 stars means you are taking a big chance if you read that book. 1 or 1/2 means definitely do not bother reading the book.

Click here for my 2010 thread: Aruba's Books for 2010--75Book Challenge
Here is Part II of my 2010 thread

Groups1001 Books to read before you die, 75 Books Challenge for 2013, 75 Books Challenge for 2014, Asian Fiction & Non-Fiction, Author Theme Reads, Club Read 2013, Club Read 2014, Fourth Place, Le Salon du peuple pour le peuple, Literary Centennialsshow all groups

Favorite lists50 Tough Books for Extreme Readers, Best Books Set in Australia and New Zealand, Best Dystopias, Best family sagas, Best of World Literature, The Guardian's 1000 Novels Everyone Must Read, Japanese Literature, METAfiction, Middle East Fiction, War in Literature

Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

LocationPuget Sound Area

Favorite authorsNot set

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/arubabookwoman (profile)
/catalog/arubabookwoman (library)

Member sinceJan 1, 2009

Currently readingLieutenant-Colonel de Maumort: A Novel by Roger Martin du Gard
The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Vol. 3: Master Of The Senate by Robert A. Caro
The Museum of Abandoned Secrets by Oksana Zabuzhko

Leave a comment


Hi Deborah, I was catching up and read your post about the Hershey school on mkboylan's thread -- and wonder if you watch the TV show Mad Men? Even if not, you may be interested to watch last year's season finale (season 6, episode 13: "In Care Of"), which has a powerful moment about the school.
I'm sorry I somehow missed your post on my thread the other day. I replied to you there, but wanted to leave the name of the bookstore here for the Powys books someone referred to me earlier. It's called the "Sundial Press." Here's their link: They sell "eclectic" books.
I hope that helps!
Happy Reading

Hi Deborah! Well, let's just cut to the chase, our Thingaversaries are shortly going into double digits so face facts and buy buy buy that bookstore!

As to the billing address, Mr. Jeff Bezos of Washington State seems to have a lot of money...

When reviews are posted, you can get notices by visiting my profile and clicking on the RSS option "richardderus' reviews." You'll get them all, but the upside is you won't have to wonder if you've missed on or wade through a lot of thread stuff.

I also post links to my reviews in the second or third post of each thread. Links to previous threads' reviews are easy to find from the threadbook I keep there, too.

Hi Deborah! Well, let's just cut to the chase, our Thingaversaries are shortly going into double digits so face facts and buy buy buy that bookstore!

As to the billing address, Mr. Jeff Bezos of Washington State seems to have a lot of money...

When reviews are posted, you can get notices by visiting my profile and clicking on the RSS option "richardderus' reviews." You'll get them all, but the upside is you won't have to wonder if you've missed on or wade through a lot of thread stuff.

I also post links to my reviews in the second or third post of each thread. Links to previous threads' reviews are easy to find from the threadbook I keep there, too.

Happy Thingaversary, Deborah, and happy shopping for your six Books of Holy Obligation.
Super. See you then,
Have fun in Houston!
Time goes by so quickly doesn't it? There is nothing that can compare to the love of a grandchild. I was raised by my loving grandmother. It wasn't until I became a grand parent that I truly understood the depth o her love.

Comment on this image. Image comments only appear on your own profile page and the image page itself.
What an adorable child!
I took your recommendation and now have a copy of the first of the David Peace quartet. It looks excellent and I hope to read it soon.
Thanks for your message. I actually thought you were Australian because you have so many Aussie books. Well, I'm so pleased you saw some of our vast country. It sounds like you went to all the right places.
See you in Club Read!
Amanda X
Hello Deborah - please post me your 2013 link so I can follow you!
Just found your page...we share some of my favorite books. I hope you will enjoy "The Lion of..."
I just ordered up a few Zolas myself and poking around LT read your review of La Curée. Frankly I'm envious that you've read and reread the entire cycle. I finished Germinal a few months ago and Nana before that and enjoyed both. There seems to be a certain rhythmn in Zola's writing and evolution of story, I'd say it's a kind of flow but not necessarily driven by exigencies of plot or tireless editorializing or manipulation of character...
Hi Deborah. I've just been browsing your page and I'm a fan of many of your desert island books. My favourites are probably David Copperfield and Absalom! Absalom!

And who is that dear little baby?

Amanda from Sydney. XX
Hi Deborah,

Just finished "His Excellency" and I think your comments are right on. To a certain extent, my feeling is a little "plus ça change, . . ." I was a little ambivalent about "The Kill". The decadence was so overwhelming. On the other hand, I suspect that it was an exposition of what truly occurred in that era in French history.

I am debating between the order in which they were written and the order in which a wiki article I found recommended the series be read. Since they are all "stand-alone" I don't know if it matters. I do think I will re-read the couple of the better known as they come up.


Just added one of my recent Rougon-Macquart acquisitions, "His Excellency", and saw that you are reading the series. Also see that yours is one of two reviews of this book!

Since I am planning to try to complete this series this year, thought I would "pop in" to see where you are in the series, if you are reading them in any particular order, and if you have any thoughts on reading the series.

Deborah, I am heeding your instructions not to post on the Reading Globally Classics in Their Own Country threads, but I had to tell you how amazed and impressed I am at the amount of work you must have done/be doing to find out about all these books and then to organize the information in such a thoughtful way. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Not only will this be incredibly helpful for the year-long theme read, but it will remain a fabulous resource for global readers as time goes on. Rebecca

PS Hope you are having lovely holidays and will have a great 2012!
Deborah, nice to receive your thoughtful reply. Malaysia has indeed changed over the years - even since my first arrival here in 1994 the changes are manifold and not always for the better. The events of 13 May 1969 are still discussed in hushed tones here and I guess all-in-all the three main ethnic groupings do a pretty good job of getting along with each other. From your lurking (! no need to be so shy!) you may have noticed that I fell in love with and married a Malay lady from Johor Bahru - Hani - who is at once my bane and my bedrock, my soulmate, my conscience and a constant source of comedy, culinary craftwomanship and domestic discipline! Therefore I have sampled Malay culture at first hand on a continuing basis but I have a wealth of different friendships across the racial and religious divides that makes this place the lovely melting pot it still is. Would be nice to hear more from you on what you have done in the intervening period since your visits to KL!
Hello. I enjoyed your review of The Royal Family. I love Vollmann. I have a question though. You said that it is even more disgusting that The Kindly Ones. I see that there are a couple of different novels with that name. Did you mean the one by Jonathan Littell?
Thank you.
I'm happy to report New Orleans is coming back! I was totally amazed at the progress!
Meeting before? Might have. We had a first LT/Green Dragon meetup there a couple/few years ago. There has been a RL book group that continues to meet there the 2nd Monday of each month. Any interesting in joining us?

I'll be sure to let you know about Lakeview area when I go to NO in June.

All the best!

Happy Mother's Day! Are you stuffed and happy? My mom's Internet service is lousy, so probably won't get on again until I get home. I wish I wasn't going to already be over my mileage--I'd swing by to see you on my way home. Take care! B.
Hi Deborah,

In response to your post over on my thread (not sure you'll see the response there), I'm curious about why you use Comments instead of Reviews?

Hi, Deb. I'm not sure how I ended up here today - just roaming a bit - but now I'm dancing around enjoying your favorites that are my favorites.....*The Raj Quartet*! *Goldbug Variations*!! *Little Dorritt*!!! with lots of secondary loves and must-reads too.
Just thought I'd say!
Another kind comment from you posted on my thread. Thank you for how sensitivity.

Hi Deb

Congratulations on your hot review!

The photos on your home page are adorable. What a beautiful baby!
A beautiful baby! Congratulations and a long and happy life to him...and to you as well.
Congratulations to you! Now, life will be forever changed. There is nothing like the very first grandbaby.

All good wishes!
What a sweet, darling baby! Congratulations and best wishes!
He's a handsome devil, he is!

*smooch* to grandson!

hi deborah,

read your post about loving The Maias by Eça de Queiroz. i'd like to recommend another book of his The Crime of Father Amaro - a powerful indictment of the abuses of the Catholic church. A book which shook the institution and the Portuguese society of course when it came out in 1875. very well written, funny at times, hard to believe that it was even allowed to be published then.


Thanks for pushing Cloud Atlas. I'm about 150 pages in and ga-ga over it. Mitchell is a genius.

Hi! A while ago you recommended The Whisperers on my 75 books thread (after I read Journey into the Whirlwind). I am at the library now, and just put a hold on it. I'm looking forward to reading it, it sounds interesting. I finally came to your profile, and lo and behold, you don't live in Aruba, but Puget Sound. I live in Woodinville. :) Maybe we'll bump into each other at Third Place Books (where I am now). Maybe you, Bonnie, and I can get together sometime...

Take care,
Dvorak's music is hauntingly beautiful. Do you have a favorite of his that you might recommend to me?

All good wishes to you,
(Better not tell Bonnie or she may want to try an intervention LOL).

I saw that! ;-)

I can't thank you enough for your kindness in showing me such a wonderful time around Seattle and its backwaters. I appreciate it so much! We decided to wait for a better day to visit Bainbridge so we didn't take the ferry until today and guess what? I managed to find a very cool little bookstore that you and Bonnie might want to try some time. Eagle--something. New and used and VERY reasonable. I managed to pick up three more titles (Better not tell Bonnie or she may want to try an intervention LOL).

I hope you do get a chance to visit someday. That would be wonderful.

Take care,


Good to share books with you. I have just come back from a few days motor bike trip around Brittany and returned with a clutch of Le Clezio's. have you discovered him? i can fill you in a little. Tel me more about Jean Echenoz.


I meant to ask if you have any suggestions for restaurants that would be good, but not with prices that are particularly out of this world (like the Space Needle restaurant that I just checked out where a hamburger is $25!) I'm thinking more like down to earth and actually affordable but not necessarily MacDonald's; a place where locals would go where the food is good. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Hi Deborah, (This is basically the same PM I sent to Bonnie except to add we live about 10 minutes from Hamburg and I am often there to shop or to get my haircut. Olean is an hour away in the other direction and Cuba Lake is about an hour from here too, although I've never been swimming there. My daughter has a friend with a place there and she goes there often. So it is a small world after all.)

Ok now I am officially excited about the visit. So many things to choose from but I don't want to be a pain in the neck so why don't you choose. Either the public library stop or the very interesting circular route around Lake Wahington with the bookstore stop both sound fantastic and I know I would love either one. I've never been to Seattlt so it's all good. (You wouldn't believe the stares and guffaws I get from people when I say I might be going to the public library on my vacation. Losers.)

We probably will do Pike Place Market and Pioneer Square on Saturday. I'm trying to figure out an itinerary before we go but it sounds like those are two touristy places we should visit.

We'll have a computer with us but I'm not sure how regularly we'll be able to check it so here's my cell phone: 716-479-5375 and e mail:

Looking forward to meeting you Deborah,
Actually I've only started him recently -- I've read "Swann's Way", first of his ISOLT series. I've been putting off reading him for years and and now regret it. He's definitely right up there in the best of 20th century writers. I'll have great pleasure more of him. I started a Proust Group on LT but, so far, not takers.
Thanks for your kind, sensitive post. It means a lot to me!

What a wonderful person you are!
She's coming with her daughter who's going to conference. She'll be here from 7/9 to 7/14. Where do you think we should take her? I'm sure she have been to the usual haunts like Pike Place Market by then. B.
Good to link up with an avid reader. I imagine you use kindle or somesuch to be able to pepper your reviews with tasty quotations from text. Am i right?
Hi, Deborah, you are most welcome.

I am fairly new to LT, and I don't know how I ever survived without it!

New Zealand is very beautiful, we have everything here, really - mountains, lakes, forest, and you can drive for an hour and go from the middle of a city to being out in the countryside.

Hi Deborah,

I posted a response to your question about Replay without knowing you had already read it! Glad you liked it too. I've starred your 75 book challenge thread--there are so many books on there that sound great that I've never considered. Also glad you liked Brodeck. I loved By a Slow River and have wanted to read Brodeck. I look forward to following you on LT.

Hi Deb

I've been busy and out of touch. How are you?

Hi Deborah:

I have a ton of fiber books, but unfortunately, none that I have listed on my library thing account. I have some of my knitting books listed on ravelry - but I have some great fiber books that are antques even. Ok, I started designing hand knitting patterns about a year ago and have had great feedback from my local knitting guild, but havent done anything yet about getting more things out there, though I want to. Basically, I love anything you can do with a needle. I embroider in several styles from crewel and jacobean to whitework, pulled-thread, needlelace techniques, brazilian stumpwork and other raised work, etc. I know a lot of different styles. Right now I am trying to learn drawn fabric embroidery, but finding sources for it is hard. This is embroidery done on very loose-weave cotton, cabric or guaze that creates a lace effect not by removing threads, but by using the tension of the embroidery thread to pull the weave of the cloth into bunches. I knit - obviously. I can crochet, though I am least expert in this. I know a little bit about tatting and lacemaking, though I am most expert in needlelace. I crazy quilt, but don't do the formal quilting and I know how to sew. I don't know how to engineer a garment without a pattern except in knitting. I would love to take a pattern drafting class somewhere, but they seem to be only for people matriculated at the fashion schools.

What kind of fiber arts do you do? I would love to hear about it as I have very little contact with other people who love these arts.

As for my library, I had to stop when I entered 200 books unless I decide to pay for a LibraryThing membership. Have you done this? Is it worth it? What are the benefits?

If you would like me to go through my art books for anything specific, I am happy to do so, just let me know and thanks for messaging me. It put a smile on my face. :) Have you started [Wives and Daughters] yet? Or are you in the sci-fi group reads? I know, I know its weird to read both literature and sci-fi but what can I tell you? I look forward to hearing from you.


PS - I see from some of your other comments that somewhere on LT, people are reading Proust? Are you? Are you enjoying it? Are you using the spiffy new translations that came out a few years ago?
Hi, Deborah, I'm American, although I've lived in London for 33 years, so pretty much assimilated! I came to London right after I graduated from college. I grew up in New Jersey, in Old Bridge, which is further south than Morristown. Where in London did you go to school?
Hi Deborah,

Yes, I'm the same Gwendolyn who is reading Proust along with Dennis and the gang. I'm loving the process, but I'm ashamed to admit I've fallen about 30 pages behind over the last week. I need to catch up! I don't like posting comments too long after the group has moved on to a new passage, and I don't like to read Dennis's posts about sections I haven't yet read, so I can't make any more comments until I catch up.

Are you planning to stick around for the full 6-7 volumes (I can never remember if it's 6 or 7)? I'm hoping to, but it is difficult to be so disciplined.

Oops! I forgot about the exhibit. How long does it last? I want to go see that with you. B.
Hi there,nice to hear from you! I`m interested in all kinds of textile art but my work is mainly free embroidery onto painted cloth, to produce contemporary abstract landscapes,mostly wrapped onto box canvases so that they can either be hung or will free stand on a shelf. I love seascapes and trees, and have used shibori to manipulate fabric to make very textural pieces( you might be able to see one in the background of my profile pic). I`m just finishing my first hand-pieced and hand quilted patchwork quilt( what a long project!)and love some of the art quilts that are coming from USA and Australian artists.
Would love to hear about your work....and what a wonderful collection of art and craft books you!

Thanks ever so much for your very thoughtful, kind outreach. It means a lot!

Looking forward to it! :-))
Did find this link: This gal is my scrapping mentor. Note that this page is mostly not digital. She is a digital designer (one for whom I'm a creative team member). The newsletter I mentioned before is by the creators of the project I'm working on offering their rationale. I thought you'd appreciate their thoughts.

Thank you so much! For looking first :) (that feels good!), for sharing and for your condolences. He was the same color as the floor and this a.m. I thought I saw him. The wood floor is not one color but changes by plank. Happened to glance at a lighter spot about the right shape and for a momoent my heart leapt with joy. Then I bawled. Not sniffled, not got teary, but out and out wept. Major bummer!

SO thanks.


PS I really enjoyed your blurb on the intro thread!
Hello Deborah. You're right... there are strands of our life that kind of overlap. Tulane, in my opinion, is a better school. They just suck at football :)... And you live in Washington? You should by all means think about joining us for the Dorkapalooza this year. Here's a thread about Dorkapalooza '09...

The Fiction Filers are a group of readers (and writers). Jonathan Evison, the creater of the Fiction Files group lives on Bainbridge Island. He wrote the book 'All About Lulu' and has another book coming out this year called 'West from Here'. This year I think it will be held at Fort Warden.

I miss New Orleans, not so much Cut Off 'down on the bayou'... but after visiting the Seattle area and Vancouver Island last year I kind of fell in love with the great NW.

Will be keeping up with your reading this year. Looking forward to what you have on your list.
Happy new year!
Hey, Deborah! Your "desert island" books are meaty--which is as it should be I guess. Knowing me as you do...which book do you think I would like the best? And the Diary of a Rapist? Not exactly the most subtle title, huh? If I don't talk to you again, Merry Christmas! And I'll see you sometimes around the New Year, right? X0
Hey, Deborah! Your "desert island" books are meaty--which is as it should be I guess. Knowing me as you do...which book do you think I would like the best?
Aruba! I just noticed that you have climbed the heights of my "users with my books" list to spot #5 - a place I had not seen you before. So, I came to check out why that is and all I can say is that we share 341 titles of very good reading from a variety of genres! (even SF, quilting, and lots of JCOates!) I see you have a lot of "collections" (something I just haven't had time to explore although I have wanted it for a long time). Have you been adding books?

I have enjoyed looking through the list of books we share and I know I would be very comfortable in your library.

Best, Lois
Hi, Deborah! Our book group is supposedly going to discuss Snowflower and the Secret Fan in a couple of weeks. Have you read it? I read it at the beginning of the year, so not going to read it again. I might read Wild Swan as a related book though. What are you reading this week? I've got Hummingbird's Daughter or What I Loved to choose from. No, wait! I said I'd read Inkheart with someone. Have you read any of these? B.
Hi, Deborah! Hope you're having a relaxing Sunday. Are you doing anything fun tomorrow for your birthday? B.
Happy Almost Birthday to you!
Dear Deborah
Thanks for your note. I see some of my favourites on your profile (above). I am a pianist but teach beginner to intermediate guitar because there is a shortage of guitar teachers in my area. I'm not much of a guitarist and I teach chords, melodies and some Spanish (which I studied long ago).
Amanda XX
I'm simply stopping by to say how much I enjoy your posts throughout the 75 book challenge group!

Hi Deborah,

Ooh, it's marvelous to find someone else who loves Bleak House! You know, I've given the matter a lot of thought, and I think Allan is probably the most understated romantic hero in English literature. I vasilate about Esther, sometimes really liking her and sometimes just wanting to *shake* her.
Zeitoun is terribly compelling. I can hardly put it down. I would have finished it in one sitting were it not for my company this weekend!

My best,

Thanks for your note on Tom Wolfe. I do plan to read more of him, but I think I will wait a little bit. After reading your review of [Nixonland], the book is moving up closer to the top of my TBR pile. Lately I have been fascinated by the 1960s and Nixon. I also bought [Nixon and Kissinger] recently but haven't started that one yet.

Thanks again for your reviews; they are very interesting.

... Was it you wanted to know what I thought of The Myrtles Plantation??
Here is what I posted in my thread:

The Myrtles Plantation.

I was so annoyed with this author, I wanted to shake her. I do not suffer fools gladly. She went and bought a house that she knew was haunted, she experienced things there herself before the final purchase. She still wanted it. Fine, I would too. But then to run around and act silly and fearful each time something occurred, well that is just annoying. I seriously disliked her. Lillie Mae Scott, the housekeeper, I loved~ but Frances annoyed the bejeebers out of me.

Typical haunted house stuff. Nothing stood out much to me. Of course having lived with a " ghost" or a few in the past may have tainted my view a bit. I enjoy the company myself..

I couldn't find the threat where it was mentioned...

If it wasn't you... :(


take care
Hi, I absolutely loved it. It was a very postmodern romp through England and you never quite knew where it was going to end up. I loved the playfulness of it. I do recommend it. I'd be interested to know what you thought.
Dear Deborah,

Thanks for your message. I have just checked the catalogue of our local library, and "The Slynx" is there, so I'm going to get it out the next time I visit - thanks for the suggestion!

Thanks also for the kind words about my writing. If you follow the links to the title of my books on my profile, or visit my blog at

then you can find out more about how to get hold of my books.

Hello, thank you for visiting my 75 book challenge. Are the SF books listed in your library representative of what you've read in this genre? I confess that I am unfamiliar with many of them. And of those authors that I recognized, for the most part I have not read the novels you listed. Octavia Butler is definitely on my list of authors to explore.
Med.Co. of Va (MCV)? that's where my brother did his peds residency years ago. He was on the teaching staff there for a good while, but, eventually gave up on Richmond and went back into rural public health service corp practice where he started out.
So, I feel a little guilty semi-panning the Updike book since he died today. *sigh*
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