A Good Divorce by John E. Keegan

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Small town Cyrus Stapleton thought he’d done everything right – married early, fathered two precocious kids, and partnered in his Seattle law firm – but his wife Jude wanted to break out. He was comfortable in the middle of the pack and she yearned for something more. Jude saw Cyrus as all the czars and dictators of the 19th century rolled into a three-piece suit and herself as the liberated visionary. Soon enough she sheds her ring, then her married name, and finally her bewildered husband.

Gripped by the helplessness and distortion of vision that accompany the meltdown of his marriage, Cyrus is bewildered. How did it ever come to this? Is it the fault of Jude’s Sunday night women’s group and its fiery leader, Lill Epstein, the ex-Army feminist with silicone breasts? Does Jude have a new lover? How does a reasonable man behave in the face of his wife’s decision and her demands for custody, alimony, and child support? How can he salvage his relationship with his kids when he is relegated to twice-a-month fatherhood? And if these concerns aren’t enough, what is he to do when, contrary to his best judgment, he becomes attracted to none other than Lill Epstein. Searching for a way back to normalcy – through a men’s therapy group, the misguided assistance of his younger brother, and his kids (who begin to act out in troubling ways in response to their mother’s new life choices) – the issue becomes the survival of his children, not his own piece of mind, and Cyrus is forced to make hard and unexpected choices himself.

An emotional roller-coaster of a novel, A GOOD DIVORCE is propelled by unexpected twists and turns, legal conflicts, suspicions both real and imagined, and a decent man’s struggle to find a middle ground between reason and emotion, while holding on to his most deeply held values.


About John E. Keegan

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John E. Keegan is the author of the novel "Clearwater Summer," named one of the New York Public Library's "Best Books for 1996." He is a graduate of Harvard Law School & practices law & writes from Seattle, where he lives with his wife, Macaela.
Published September 1, 2003 by Permanent Pr Pub Co. 234 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Even after his daughter’s failed suicide attempt, he still won’t say right out loud that a live-in lesbian lover may not be the best custody arrangement, though Jude needles him about being uncool.

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