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In The Name Of Friendship by Marilyn French
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In The Name Of Friendship

by Marilyn French

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763262,396 (3.27)None
Marilyn French's seven million copy bestsellerThe Women's Room crystallized the issues that ignited the women's movement. Now the acclaimed author updates that classic with a new exploration of the truths and realities behind women's lives.In the Name of Friendship dares to investigate how the women's movement changed the lives of those it touched and what hurdles it left to cross. Set in the Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts, this wise novel is a group portrait of four disparate women who forge life-altering friendships despite personalities that vary as greatly as their vocations and ages. The novel weaves together a series of family crises with the friendships that help the four women refashion their lives. Maddy, the seventy-six-year-old real estate agent and matriarch of the group, struggles with the gradual death of her angry and rebellious Vietnam-marked son; fifty-year-old Alicia fights to reconnect her gay son with her newly retired husband; seventy-year-old musician Emily strives to bridge the gap with her estranged niece right at the moment her composition career starts to finally bloom; and Jenny, the thirty-year-old painter and baby of the group, questions the life she has created with her successful painter husband and tries to decide if she wants more from life. With this unusual group of multi-generational ladies, French tells a truly rare tale about four women who accidentally come into each other's lives and in the process form an enduring friendship. It is a story of supporting one another, of looking at the grim conflicts created by cultural expectations of women, and realizing you are not alone--truly a tale of continuing hope.… (more)
Member:christinejoseph
Title:In The Name Of Friendship
Authors:Marilyn French
Info:McArthur & Co, Edition: Hardcover
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:r. 2006, fiction, women, friendship, families, Berkshires, Massachusetts, USA

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In the Name of Friendship by Marilyn French

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4 various women — friends in the Berkshires — Very Feminist + good

Set in the Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts, this wise novel is a group portrait of four disparate women who forge life-altering friendships despite personalities that vary as greatly as their vocations and ages. The novel weaves together a series of family crises with the friendships that help the four women refashion their lives. Maddy, the seventy-six-year-old real estate agent and matriarch of the group, struggles with the gradual death of her angry and rebellious Vietnam-marked son; fifty-year-old Alicia fights to reconnect her gay son with her newly retired husband; seventy-year-old musician Emily strives to bridge the gap with her estranged niece right at the moment her composition career starts to finally bloom; and Jenny, the thirty-year-old painter and baby of the group, questions the life she has created with her successful painter husband and tries to decide if she wants more from life.
  christinejoseph | Dec 30, 2016 |
Failed my 50-page test...and I gave it 100 pages because I like her previous work.
I had expected French's new novel of ideas to be about the kinds of older women I could more easily identify with now -- women, married or not, who had gone to work and fought for careers; women who had left their husbands back in the 1970s and raised children alone; women now dealing with loneliness, health problems, uncertain economic futures. But French's women are a rather rarefied group. Exceedingly well-versed in feminist theory and women's history, they venerate Emma Goldman, Emily Dickinson and Eleanor of Aquitaine and celebrate their profound friendship every March 25, on Lady's Day, the pagan new year, by dancing with each other.

However none of the three married women ever opted (or was forced) to become self-supporting or to contribute to a struggling household; even the life of the unmarried composer has been eased by the house she inherited from her family. Sitting on Jenny's porch, with no financial worries hanging over them, it is easy for them to congratulate themselves on their beautiful absence of competitive spirit. (There seem to be no poorer women with fewer choices in Steventon; they all live in Bridgeport, where Emily's niece has opened a free maternity clinic.) ( )
  jlcampbell05 | Feb 1, 2007 |
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Marilyn French's seven million copy bestsellerThe Women's Room crystallized the issues that ignited the women's movement. Now the acclaimed author updates that classic with a new exploration of the truths and realities behind women's lives.In the Name of Friendship dares to investigate how the women's movement changed the lives of those it touched and what hurdles it left to cross. Set in the Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts, this wise novel is a group portrait of four disparate women who forge life-altering friendships despite personalities that vary as greatly as their vocations and ages. The novel weaves together a series of family crises with the friendships that help the four women refashion their lives. Maddy, the seventy-six-year-old real estate agent and matriarch of the group, struggles with the gradual death of her angry and rebellious Vietnam-marked son; fifty-year-old Alicia fights to reconnect her gay son with her newly retired husband; seventy-year-old musician Emily strives to bridge the gap with her estranged niece right at the moment her composition career starts to finally bloom; and Jenny, the thirty-year-old painter and baby of the group, questions the life she has created with her successful painter husband and tries to decide if she wants more from life. With this unusual group of multi-generational ladies, French tells a truly rare tale about four women who accidentally come into each other's lives and in the process form an enduring friendship. It is a story of supporting one another, of looking at the grim conflicts created by cultural expectations of women, and realizing you are not alone--truly a tale of continuing hope.

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