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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Review Anna Quindlen Rise and Shine

The book is a story of two sisters Meghan and Bridget orphaned at an early age and brought up by an aunt who loved them dearly. The story looks back at their childhood in small doses but mainly concentrates on their lives as adults.
Meghan becomes a top class broadcaster while Bridget becomes a social worker and the categories of their work defines their own worlds. One where Meghan is completely at home with Presidents, private jets, and the whole gamut of New York Society literally at her feet, whilst Bridget the unknown one works stolidly with junkies, drug addicted mothers, the police and the hospitals trying to save as many mothers and families as she could.
The book also seems to be a commentary on the various stratas of New York society and you get quite a good idea of how the various sections actually operate. For someone who is not American and is unlikely to visit New York, I felt that this was an interesting part of the book though of course it may not appeal to others who are more familiar with the city and with American life. The book opens vistas which otherwise would be unknown to lots of people! Bridgets life with the downtrodden, with those whom she felt had never been given a chance to "rise" from the squalor of their lives is at variance with the general view held in the East that America is a land of opportunity never mind the milk and honey..
The story further evolves into the relationships that develop between the sisters, the tragic accident to Leo - Meghans son, the breakdown of Meghans marriage and the surprising news of Bridget's pregnancy at 43 much to the dismay of her live in lover Irving. All these add to make the story a family saga as well - though overpowering it all is Meghans job and what happens when she falls from grace - but her ultimate rise once again.
I liked the book not just from the NYC angle and Manhattan in particular but also from the family story angle as well. I will go back to this author again to see what else she has in store for me.
The book was from my library at Carnegie and hopefully they will have more of the same author.


Darlene said...

I've often wondered if this book by her was good. I've only ever read Black and Blue and I really liked that one. I also have her newest one to read. I'm glad to hear it's worth reading.

Anonymous said...

I've never read Quindlen, and I've seen mixed reviews for this book. You've made it sound interesting, though.


bermudaonion said...

This book does sound good and the cover is just fantastic!

Lady Q said...

I've never read any of her books. Black and Blue got a lot of press so I may read that one someday. No desire to visit NYC, huh? Is there any place in the US you would like to visit? Where do you like to go for vacations?

lilly said...

I've read only one of her books (I don't remember the title but it was one of her early novels)but I unfortunately wasn't impressed. This one though sounds interesting, especially the Manhattan angle. I love reading books about the City.

Mystica said...

Thank you everyone for the comments. I seem to pick books sometimes which no one else is blogging about and then I do wonder whether bloggers would be interested? So its nice to get comments on these books.

Lilly - welcome to my blog and thank you for following.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the one Quindle book I read and this one looks good too!