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The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards
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The Memory Keeper's Daughter (original 2005; edition 2007)

by Kim Edwards

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
13,806434152 (3.46)1 / 395
Member:Glorybe1
Title:The Memory Keeper's Daughter
Authors:Kim Edwards
Info:Penguin (2007), Edition: 1st Penguin Edition, Paperback, 432 pages
Collections:Finished, Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:None

Work details

The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards (2005)

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English (424)  Dutch (3)  Portuguese (2)  Spanish (2)  Italian (1)  All (432)
Showing 1-5 of 424 (next | show all)
English 11 Novel Option: The Memory Keeper’s Daughter. Summary from Amazon.ca:

… on a winter night in 1964 in Lexington, Kentucky, a blizzard forces Dr. David Henry to deliver his own twins. His son, born first, is perfectly healthy, but the doctor immediately recognizes that his daughter has Down syndrome. Rationalizing it as a need to protect Norah, his wife, he makes a split second decision that will alter all of their lives forever. He asks his nurse, Caroline, to take the baby away to an institution and never to reveal the secret. Instead, she disappears into another city to raise the child herself.

The Memory Keeper’s Daughter is a respectable read, well-enough written. I did find it very repetitive (and annoying) in terms of the author continually pointing out the emotions of the characters – the characters’ actions spoke for their emotions, the telling wasn’t necessary. That said, the story kept me reading, and I think it is one that will appeal to some of my English 11 students – and this was my motivation for reading it. ( )
1 vote lit_chick | Oct 12, 2016 |
was really interesting ( )
  KimSalyers | Oct 1, 2016 |
It was surprising to me that a book in which a main character has Down Syndrome would misspell the name of this condition. That sort of sets the tone - it is beautifully written for the most part, but doesn't seem plugged in to how real people feel and act. At first, I found it to be a compelling read, but then it became sort of a slog as we had to check in with these unhappy people every few years while we waited to find out how the inevitable Big Reveal would come down. ( )
  Amniot | Sep 13, 2016 |
A very sad book focusing on a secret and what it can do to one's life. True, there are some unlikely and hard to imagine moments in the book, but it is the overall atmosphere that I liked. I think the author managed well to draw a parallel between 1960s when the twins were born and the present times. There are many seemingly unimportant characters in the story, but I liked that and I think it added some value to the whole story. However, this is not the book that most people would like. I did. I find it very emotional and moving. Kim Edwards is a great writer who knows a lot about emotions and relationships and how to put those in words. ( )
  Mrvica | Jul 6, 2016 |
Did not like this book at all. ( )
  AveNegron | Jun 29, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 424 (next | show all)
Kim Edwards's debut novel is a winner, and those who read THE MEMORY KEEPER'S DAUGHTER are going to want to read her next one. Highly recommended.
 
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Dedication
For Abigail and Naomi
First words
The snow started to fall several hours before her labor began.
Quotations
They'd live their lives day by day, each one taking them another step away from their lost daughter.
... when he slid his arms around her again, he was thinking, I love you. I love you so much, and I lied to you. And the distance between them, millimeters only, the space of a breath, opened up and deepened, became a cavern at whose edge he stood.
Their lost daughter still hovered between them; their lives had shaped themselves around her absence.
She did not know that her discarded clothes fluttered in a wind that he himself had set in motion so many years ago.
This was the grief he had carried with him, heavy as a stone in his heart. This was the grief he had tried to spare Norah and Paul, only to create so many others.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
A heart wrenching novel about human choice. Dr. David Henry makes a choice that forever changes lives of his family. Edwards delves into her characters and makes the reader feel as thought they are looking through a window into someone's life.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0143037145, Paperback)

Award-winning writer Kim Edwards's The Memory Keeper's Daughter is a brilliantly crafted family drama that explores every mother's silent fear: what would happen if you lost your child and she grew up without you?

On a winter night in 1964, Dr. David Henry is forced by a blizzard to deliver his own twins. His son, born first, is perfectly healthy. Yet when his daughter is born, he sees immediately that she has Down's syndrome. Rationalizing it as a need to protect Norah, his wife, he makes a split second decision that will alter all of their lives forever. He asks his nurse to take the baby away to an institution and never to reveal the secret. But Caroline, the nurse, cannot leave the infant. Instead, she disappears into another city to raise the child herself. So begins this beautifully told story that unfolds over a quarter of a century in which these two families, ignorant of each other, are yet bound by David Henry's fateful decision that long-ago winter night.

A rich and deeply moving page-turner, The Memory Keeper's Daughter captures the way life takes unexpected turns and how the mysterious ties that hold a family together help us survive the heartache that occurs when long-buried secrets burst into the open. It is an astonishing tale of redemptive love.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:20 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

"On a winter night in 1964, Dr. David Henry is forced by a blizzard to deliver his own twins. His son, born first, is perfectly healthy. Yet when his daughter is born, he sees immediately that she has Down's Syndrome. Rationalizing it as a need to protect Norah, his wife, he makes a split-second decision that will alter all of their lives forever. He asks his nurse to take the baby away to an institution and never to reveal the secret. But Caroline, the nurse, cannot leave the infant. Instead, she disappears into another city to raise the child herself. So begins this story that unfolds over a quarter of a century - in which these two families, ignorant of each other, are yet bound by the fateful decision made that long-ago winter night. Norah henry, who knows only that her daughter died at birth, remains inconsolable; her grief weighs heavily on their marriage. And Paul, their son, raises himself as best he can, in a house grown cold with mourning. Meanwhile, Phoebe, the lost daughter, grows from a sunny child to a vibrant young woman whose mother loves her as fiercely as if she were her own." "The Memory Keeper's Daughter articulates a silent fear close to the heart of every mother: What would happen if you lost your child, and she grew up without you?"--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 11 descriptions

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