The Rest of Life by Mary Gordon
Three Novellas (Contemporary American Fiction)

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Synopsis

Three masterful tales of women in the grips of complicated and dangerous loves
The Rest of Life
is comprised of three spellbinding novellas about women in love. In Immaculate Man, an agnostic New York divorcée finds herself in thrall to an unexpected passion for a Catholic priest—who is also desired by a former superior—and who becomes unmoored by the affair. Living at Home is set in London, and depicts the strange union between an English woman—a thrice-divorced doctor who works with autistic children—and an Italian man—a free-roaming journalist addicted to high-risk assignments. The title novella centers on the memories of an elderly Italian woman, recalling her days as a girl in the bloom of first love, who embarked on a suicide pact with her boyfriend, but was the only one not to follow through.  
 

About Mary Gordon

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Edmund Wilson (1895-1972) was a novelist, memoirist, playwright, journalist, poet, and editor but it is as a literary critic that he is most highly regarded. Mary Gordon's most recent novel is "Spending."
 
Published August 6, 2013 by Open Road Media. 272 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Now, 63 years later, she is back visiting with her son and his girlfriend, seeking the ``line running through her body like a wick'' that will connect the passionate girl to the anesthetized adult who has sleepwalked through ``the rest of life.'' These novellas grow through the slow accreti...

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Publishers Weekly

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The title novella concerns love remembered, as Paola, an elderly woman traveling through Italy, recollects her youthful romance with Leo, who died of self-inflicted gunshot wounds after she reneged on their teenaged suicide pact: ``They would make love.

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Publishers Weekly

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Three powerful novellas tell of women who experience impassioned and transfiguring love affairs.

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The Independent

In Living at Home, the narrator is a doctor working with autistic children who live in perpetual fear of their own fragmentation, scarcely able to express even their immediate desires.

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London Review of Books

In what ways, the protagonists keep asking themselves, are these lives different from the ‘ordinary life’ and the ‘good life’?

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