Private Life by Jane Smiley

Private Life

Jane Smiley

From girlhood in 1870s' Missouri to WWII California, the reader follows the often fascinating but always wistful life of gentle heroine, Margaret. I found much of interest in her journey BUT this is not the book for anyone feeling trapped or regretful of life's opportunities missed!

Extract

'This is nonsense, Andrew.' But she wanted to say 'insanity'. She should have started with the word 'insanity', but she had done her usual thing, which was to be wifely and reasonable, which allowed him to weave a net of plausibility around her, and now they were discussing a piece of insanity as if it might be true.

Parallels
  • The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall
  • Family Album by Penelope Lively

Books with similar mood

Gold Dust

Ibrahim al-Koni

Requiem for the East

Andrei Makine

Eve Out of Her Ruins

Ananda Devi

Bahia Blues

Yasmina Traboulsi

In a Strange Room

Damon Galgut

White is for Witching

Helen Oyeyemi

The Child

Sarah Schulman

Confession of a Murderer Told in One Night

Joseph Roth

Spies

Michael Frayn

Horse Latitudes

Jay Merrick

In the Distance

Hernan Diaz

Such Small Hands

Andrés Barba

Europe in Autumn

Dave Hutchinson

The Book of Gold Leaves

Mirza Waheed

Honour

Elif Shafak

My Dearest Jonah

Matthew Crow

What Will Survive

Joan Smith

In the Wake

Per Petterson

Gate of the Sun

Elias Khoury

White Lightning

Justin Cartwright

The Second Life of Samuel Tyne

Esi Edugyan

Kith and Kin

Stevie Davies

The English Years

Norbert Gstein

Crawling at Night

Nani Power

Eagles and Angels

Juli Zeh

Maya

Jostein Gaarder

Premeditated Murder

Slobodan Selenic

Hotel World

Ali Smith

The Blind Assassin

Margaret Atwood

Notes for a War Story

Gipi &nbsp

Disquiet

Julia Leigh

In the Light of What We Know

Zia Haider Rahman

The House of Shattered Wings

Aliette de Bodard

Endgame

Ahmet Altan

Fault Lines

Nancy Huston

The Ninth Life of Louis Drax

Liz Jensen

The Confessions of Max Tivoli

Andrew Sean Greer

The Farming of Bones

Edwidge Danticat

Altered Land

Jules Hardy

We That Are Young

Preti Taneja

Man Tiger

Eka Kurniawan

Thus Bad Begins

Javier Marías

The Prophets of Eternal Fjord

Kim Leine

The Lives of Others

Neel Mukherjee

The Visitors

Patrick O'Keeffe

Swimming Home

Deborah Levy

The Pleasures of Men

Kate Williams

The Art of Being Dead

Stephen Clayton