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A Good Woman by Lisa Appignanesi
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A Good Woman

by Lisa Appignanesi

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* Inherited from Mum's shelves.
  velvetink | Mar 31, 2013 |
From my librarytart blog http://librarytart.wordpress.com/2008/11/20/an-intriguing-look-at-the-meaning-of...

Appignanesi, Lisa ~ A good woman

50-word description
An elusive and sexually-magnetic woman, Maria d’Este, returns to her home city of Paris to conquer newfound regrets and re-invent herself into a ‘good’ person. A chance meeting with a childhood friend — who epitomises Maria’s ideal of goodness — causes Maria to examine the impact of her self-seeking life on others.

150-word review
All I’d change about this book is the inside jacket blurb. The text all but ignores the complexity and shades of meaning laid out by Appignanesi.

This mismatch is important because the intertwining of Maria with her childhood friend, Beatrice, dissects and plays with shifting definitions and perceptions of goodness. The young Maria treasured Beatrice’s visits until she thought her mother treated Beatrice as the ‘good’ girl of the pair. Maria’s jealousy caused her to drive Beatrice from their lives – a thoughtless act that fills the now-regretful Maria with horror.

The two women meet as adults in Paris when Maria is making amends for her free-wheeling life, and models herself on Beatrice in the pursuit for goodness. The saintly Beatrice embraces her idealistic vision of Maria’s independence until their unintentional actions must force them apart again.

Appignanesi asks the reader convincingly to withhold moral judgement and understand the subjective and flawed premise of goodness.

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Fiction A

Borrowed
Nov 08

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Magnificent ( )
1 vote mscrankypants | Nov 29, 2008 |
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One's real life is often the life one does not lead.
--- Oscar Wilde
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I would have liked this story to have a happy ending.
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