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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A totally encompassing read
After reading the first few chapters of this book, I was tempted to put it down and not finish it, as it was somewhat depressing for me and seemed without redeeming factors. In hindsight I was allowing the previous reviewers to influence my opinion;luckily I put that behind me and carried on reading allowing the book to carry me along on its own merits.

Now...
Published on Nov. 28 2006 by A. Houston

versus
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A fine story trapped within ..
This is a book about the flaws of humanity: physical flaws, errors in judgement and the consequences of living with those flaws. It is also a book about some of the triumphs of humanity despite those flaws.

The novel contains some wonderful prose and describes some difficult choices but never really gives me one character whose role is sufficient to carry me...
Published on May 11 2007 by Jennifer Cameron-Smith


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A totally encompassing read, Nov. 28 2006
By 
A. Houston (BC, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
After reading the first few chapters of this book, I was tempted to put it down and not finish it, as it was somewhat depressing for me and seemed without redeeming factors. In hindsight I was allowing the previous reviewers to influence my opinion;luckily I put that behind me and carried on reading allowing the book to carry me along on its own merits.

Now after several hours devoted to just finishing it, I am amazed at the sheer scope of this story, the volume of emotional content the author managed to convey, and the way her writing managed to draw me in; to understand her characters, their weaknesses, their sins and the healing power of forgiveness.

Did I like David or Norah, or even Caroline,Al,Paul and Phoebe? My affection, present or lacking,is irrelevant. What I liked about the book is that it strikes me as similar to my experience with people in my life, there are things about people(including myself) that I like, and things I don't like. Each one of us is human, every one of us has secrets, and we are all vulnerable, usually unbeknownst to those who know us best. What I love is this author's way of putting this story on paper, making these characters real in a way that I'll never forget them.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A fine story trapped within .., May 11 2007
By 
Jennifer Cameron-Smith "Expect the Unexpected" (ACT, Australia) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This is a book about the flaws of humanity: physical flaws, errors in judgement and the consequences of living with those flaws. It is also a book about some of the triumphs of humanity despite those flaws.

The novel contains some wonderful prose and describes some difficult choices but never really gives me one character whose role is sufficient to carry me through the challenges, triumphs and events. Perhaps there are too many secrets, too much drama and not enough trust? I'm not sure.

I am intrigued enough to want to read more by this author. Clearly, this novel has appealed to many.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not worthy of best seller status., July 31 2007
By 
maya j (Quail Crossing) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
I have read many, many books this past year, and unfortunately, 'The Memory Keeper's Daughter' was at the very bottom of the list. It makes me realize that although a book can be at the top of the "best sellers" list for months, it doesn't necessarily mean it's a literary masterpiece, or frankly, even a good work of fiction. The book starts out in a way that you anticipate all good things, but from there it just fizzles. This book is WAY overwritten. There are too many words to tell this story, and all these words do nothing more than become redundant (how many times can you use the phrase "motes of light"?). Even with all these words, the characters are still underdeveloped. You find yourself wondering how nurse Caroline can be so in love with this truck driver she's barely known, and Norah is a bit of a whiner/primadonna but is somehow still so desirable. Dr. Henry seems like such a pathetic man, it amazes that he could even have been a surgeon. I kept wanting more from all these people, and all I got were "motes of light" and weird ramblings about driving along the bridge fast and a woman (Norah) who was technically an alcoholic but not really an alcoholic, because that part never fleshed out either. Basically, it was the same prose over and over, and night after night, I felt I had to force myself to read it, because I am loathe to not finish even the worst of books. I probably could have read the first few chapters and the last few chapters and called it a night. There are way better choices out there for your reading pleasure.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Best seller????? WHY????, Jan. 3 2010
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
I got this book since it was on a best seller's list, and if this type of book gets on a bets sellers list i no longer will trust best sellers list!!!

the story line sounds great, father giving away a daughter since she has downs to a nurse. It sounds like a great story a great read, something different and interesting.
But the writing is boring, full of irrelevant detail. There are different narrators in every chapter ( which ususally i like) but in this book was not well done.

Unlike a review on the back cover, there is no human connection in the book.
This book is just LACKING in every way..... dont waste your time... believe me you willl be disappointed i was.....
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Waste of Time, April 10 2008
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
I was very interested in reading this book after I read the back cover. I should of stopped there and put it back on the shelf. It was drawn out and boring and so wordy. Save your money and your time and do not bother to read this book. The best part is the cover.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Slight disappointment, Aug. 22 2006
By 
N. Rupert (Vancouver, BC Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
Ms. Edwards is a short story writer; this would have made a better short story. Her descriptions are good, but the development of her characters over three decades is ultimately unconvincing.

Norah is never a sympathetic character, which is ironic since she is the main victim of circumstances in the novel. Hers and David's marriage is portrayed as cold and empty and yet they remain a couple. We are never given a reason for Norah to stay while she finds fulfillment in her work and lovers, although David's own guilt seems reason enough for him to endure this world he has created.

Caroline's and Al's relationship is more authentic and interesting, yet we only get glimpses into those lives.

Phoebe is written as a character with dimension and not as a stereotype, and I think the novel's strength is in its portrayal of people with Down's Syndrome and their families' fight to include them in mainstream society.

Too many metaphors were overused, such as David's photographic attempts to stop time and capture a moment forever.

Ultimately, I enjoyed reading this story, but it fell short of expectations.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotional and heart-wrenching!, Sept. 13 2006
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
The Memory Keeper's Daughter is a story of love, deception, tragedy and possible redemption. When orthopedic surgeon Dr. David Henry is forced to deliver his own twin babies during a freak snowstorm in Kentucky, he is faced with a dilemma. His son is born healthy, while his daughter is born with Down Syndrome.

Recognizing the battle that lays ahead for a handicapped child and for his family, he makes a life-changing decision--one that will affect many lives in the end. He tells his nurse, Caroline Gill, to take his daughter to a home for disabled children and the deception begins. He explains to his wife that their daughter died at birth and one lie leads to another. Then Caroline disappears with the baby and David is haunted by guilt and fear.

The story reveals each character's reaction to the baby girl's "death". The son Paul would give anything to have his twin back; Norah, David's wife, mourns the loss of a baby and this affects their marriage. There is a strong message in this powerful and compelling story, a message of faith, trust and hope...but most of all love.

After losing my son 4 hours after his birth, this novel brought back poignant memories and tugged at the pit of my stomach. The Memory Keeper's Daughter is a novel worth reading and crying over. And it is one that stays with you long after you've put it down.

As an author myself I appreciate a book that makes me 'feel' things, as that is my goal with my own novels. Kim Edwards has certainly accomplished that goal. This is a 2-Kleenex box book! Kudos, Kim!

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif, [......]
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story, March 19 2007
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
You'd think that just about every book on the bestseller list would be a great story with a great beginning, middle, and end. Not always the case. BUT, The Memory Keeper's Daughter IS one such book. I like to compare it to The Glass Castle in this respect, though that is a memoir.

The premise of the story is this: During a snowstorm in Kentucky, a doctor delivers his own twins. One is "normal" and one has Down Syndrome. He lies to his wife, telling her the one with DS has died. I don't want to give too much of the story away, but suffice it to say that things don't go smoothly for the doctor, his wife, the twins, or anyone else, making for one heck of a great story. I was reminded at times of Bark of the Dogwood with its dark moments, or perhaps even The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, though the books have totally different plots. Still, the pacing and writing reminded me of these novels.

Frankly I wasn't able to put this book down. If you want a good story, easy to read, and something you can recommmend to others, this is the book.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre, May 12 2007
By 
Jayne N (Vancouver, Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
I read this book because I'm the mother of a young boy with Down Syndrome. I thought it read like a mediocre after school special on TV. The author has to really stretch in the beginning to ensure the father's actions are somehow believable and sincere, but quite honestly it comes across as melodramatic and contrived. I know from experience that the initial shock of having a child with Down Syndrome may be challenging, but the father just didn't seem believable. This book is simply not very good and then to annoy me further, the ending was a cop-out. I think the author tried to really develop the character with Down Syndrome, but none of the characters in this book resonated with me, the child included. They were all not quite 3 dimensional. If you are interested in the lives of families with children who have Down Syndrome I recommend an excellent well-written memoir called She's All Eyes by Maura Conlon-McIver.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars meh..., Oct. 2 2009
This review is from: The Memory Keeper's Daughter (Paperback)
Although this was a good storyline the book, for me, took forever to read (i couldnt even finish it). It has barely any diologue to keep the book going and to keep the reader interested. It is descriptive to the last miniscule detail and frankly quite boring. The premesis is cool and interesting but I would not recomend reading it.
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The Memory Keeper's Daughter
The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards (Paperback - May 30 2006)
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