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This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage

by Ann Patchett

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,3587713,809 (4.08)119
Biography & Autobiography. Literary Criticism. Nonfiction. HTML:

A Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick

"I had been so engaged by Ann Patchett's multifaceted story, so lured in by her confiding voice, that I forgot I was on the job. [...] As the best personal essays often do, Patchett's is a two-way mirror, reflecting both the author and her readers." â?? New York Times Book Review

Blending literature and memoir, New York Times bestselling author Ann Patchett, author of State of Wonder, Run, and Bel Canto, examines her deepest commitmentsâ??to writing, family, friends, dogs, books, and her husbandâ??creating a resonant portrait of a life in This is the Story of a Happy Marriage.

This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage takes us into the very real world of Ann Patchett's life. Stretching from her childhood to the present day, from a disastrous early marriage to a later happy one, it covers a multitude of topics, including relationships with family and friends, and charts the hard work and joy of writing, and the unexpected thrill of opening a bookstore.

As she shares stories of the people, places, ideals, and art to which she has remained indelibly committed, Ann Patchett brings into focus the large experiences and small moments that have shaped her as a daughter, wife, and wri… (more)

  1. 10
    On Writing by Stephen King (tandah)
  2. 00
    Havanas in Camelot: Personal Essays by William Styron (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Though William Styron's prose tends to be bleaker than Ann Patchett's, readers will find both these essay collections absorbing explorations of their personal challenges and their relationships with people, places, and the arts.
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» See also 119 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 76 (next | show all)
I love Ann Patchett. This is a charming collection of mainly biographical pieces. Lots to enjoy. ( )
  fmclellan | Jan 23, 2024 |
A very good collection of essays. Truly pleased I finally have read Ms. Patchett. Now on to a novel. ( )
  wvlibrarydude | Jan 14, 2024 |
I loved this collection. It made me want to do nothing but read and write for a while. ( )
  AngelClaw | May 8, 2023 |
This is a collection of articles she has previously published. I still don't get the title of this book. Some interesting stories and insights to life. Not my favorite...... ( )
  wincheryl | Jun 20, 2022 |
Great book! Highly recommend! ( )
  sharonlesch | Mar 1, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 76 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
Dedication
For Karl
First words
The tricky thing about being a writer, or about being any kind of artist, is that in addition to making art you also have to make a living.
Quotations
Page 160:  Color, while being the most visible thing we can know about a tree, is…created by that part of light that the tree has cast off.  The tree absorbs all the other light waves of color, welcomes them as part of itself; the green we see is the negative, the reflected-off reality it wants no part of.  Where its definition of itself ends, our definition of it is just beginning.
Writers need not be confined by their own dull lives and petty Christmas sadness. They could cut new stories out of the whole cloth, stories that did not reflect their own experiences but spoke instead to the depth of their emotions. (p. 17, How to Read a Christmas Story)
Ninety percent of what I now about fiction writing I learned that year. Write it out. Tell the truth. Stack up the pages. Learn to write by writing. Slowing down was for later, years later. (p. 28, The Getaway Car)
Novel writing, I soon discovered, is like channel swimming: a slow steady stroke over a long distance in a cold, dark sea. (p. 45, The Getaway Car)
In my books, I make up the experiences and characters but the emotional life is real. It is my own. (p. 157, Fact vs. Fiction)
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This is a collection of essays that includes an essay of the same title. Please do not combine the two works.
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Biography & Autobiography. Literary Criticism. Nonfiction. HTML:

A Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick

"I had been so engaged by Ann Patchett's multifaceted story, so lured in by her confiding voice, that I forgot I was on the job. [...] As the best personal essays often do, Patchett's is a two-way mirror, reflecting both the author and her readers." â?? New York Times Book Review

Blending literature and memoir, New York Times bestselling author Ann Patchett, author of State of Wonder, Run, and Bel Canto, examines her deepest commitmentsâ??to writing, family, friends, dogs, books, and her husbandâ??creating a resonant portrait of a life in This is the Story of a Happy Marriage.

This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage takes us into the very real world of Ann Patchett's life. Stretching from her childhood to the present day, from a disastrous early marriage to a later happy one, it covers a multitude of topics, including relationships with family and friends, and charts the hard work and joy of writing, and the unexpected thrill of opening a bookstore.

As she shares stories of the people, places, ideals, and art to which she has remained indelibly committed, Ann Patchett brings into focus the large experiences and small moments that have shaped her as a daughter, wife, and wri

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Book description
Contents:
--
Nonfiction, an introduction
--
How to read a Christmas story
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The getaway car : a practical memoir about writing and life
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The sacrament of divorce
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The Paris match
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This dog's life
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The best seat in the house
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My road to Hell was paved
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Tennessee
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On responsibility
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The wall
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Fact vs. fiction
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My life in sales
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"The love between the two women is not normal"
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The right to read
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Do not disturb
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Introduction to "The Best American Short Stories 2006"
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Love sustained
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The bookstore strikes back
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This is the story of a happy marriage
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Our deluge, drop by drop
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Dog without end
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The mercies.
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