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3.4 out of 5 stars
The Memory Keeper's Daughter
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Showing 1-10 of 11 reviews(2 star)show all reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
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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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on July 31, 2007
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
on April 10, 2008
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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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on May 12, 2007
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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on December 13, 2008
I can't recall being as disappointed in a novel, especially by someone with obvious talent, as I was with this one.

Yesterday on the bus, as I continued my commitment to finishing it, I was continually looking up, glancing around, screaming in my head 'You're kidding, right? You're not serious!!!' after coming upon yet another abysmally conceived bit.

At its best, there is some very nice writing here. (Mostly at the beginning, before the author took off on her mawkish, melodramatic journey) At its worst? High school short story-time.

Its earnestness...especially as a New York Times #1 Bestseller!!!...is astounding. The lack of 'deftness of touch' is reminiscent of using a Mack truck to move a wine glass. That Ms Edwards wrote 'The Secrets of the Fire King' is astounding...never mind the facts that she's a) a graduate of the Iowa Writer's Workshop AND b) an assistant professor of English at the University of Kentucky.

My boggled mind has been traumatized.

I want to know two things:

1) How much the writers on the book's covers were paid to contribute the accolades they did, and

2) Where, oh where were her editors?!?

Unbelievably disappointing. Even as I type this, my frustration, my anger prevents me from properly castigating all those involved...and also from properly expressing my sadness at the loss of time and energy I've experienced in reading this dross.

Although I believe Ms Edwards is talented, and wish her the best, I suspect that she should stay away from long-form fiction. 'The Memory Keeper's Daughter' suggests that it's beyond her.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 23, 2007
Sounded like a wonderful premise but after the first chapter the story became so contrived and the characters never really developed. The storytelling was so dreadful in fact that I had to stop half way through. Not sure what all the fuss was about.
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on August 17, 2013
I became frustrated that the lack of connection between the husband and wife could be drawn out through the whooooole book. The author could have been way more creative with this central issue. The other thing is that I couldn't visualize the characters; I couldn't "see" them. Not impressed.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on August 7, 2007
I agree that this novel is not worthy of its bestseller status. It is unnecessarily long and contains unbelievable, unlikable characters and situations. I actually found myself rolling my eyes while reading some parts of the book, which is largely predictable and left me feeling unsatisfied. I believe that whatever point that Edwards was trying to make got sidelined by an overabundance of filler material. It's a shame, really, because the book's interesting premise has been fouled by poor delivery.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
I have read a great many glowing reviews for this book. Well written, it is not, and it was very obvious to me that it was a first novel. The premise is good, and the whole concept that a single snap decision is the result of one's life experiences, and then in turn shapes the lives of one's self and one's family, is an excellent basis for a novel. But I found the writing awkward, and some of the scenarios less than believable. I challenge any man to find his wife's clothes on a beach, hear her with another man, and then go away and NEVER mention it????? And the adolescent son does the same? PUHLEASE???????
Also, who has daffodils for wedding flowers in the fall???
And where did the sister go in Paris: she vanished in a park with no explanation?
This type of detail problem is what one expects from a Harlequin paperback, and not from a novel getting the reviews Memory Keeper's Daughter has garnered.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on June 14, 2009
I have wanted to write a review for this book for a number of months but just kept forgetting to do so. I picked up the book because I heard that it was very good and, as is sometimes the case, I found this to be one of those books that doesn't live up to the hype. In fact, this book down right pissed me off. I found the story so utterly one-sided and selfish from the mother's perspective that I actually wanted to throw the book at something. By the end of the story you are basically being told that absolutely everything that happens in the life of this family is the result of one action of the father and then him hiding that action. That is B.S. No matter one person's actions that does not excuse the wife from acting the way she does throughout the whole book, nor does it give everyone the right to blame all the problems on that person once they are dead.

All said and done, the story idea was good, the writing was okay but as the story moves on, you get the impression that the writer either 1. hates men or 2. write the book because a man did her wrong and now she feels the need to blame everything on him. The book is not realistic unless you have no concept that your actions are the result of your own decisions. If the father in the story can be held accountable for everyone's problems, then so to should his wife who, during their entire marriage never once asked him why he seemed to have drawn into himself, instead she had countless affairs and treated him like garbage and then tells their son in the end it was basically all his fathers fault (great mother that one is, and apparently their son is stupid for believing everything was his father's fault even though he has known about all the affairs.)

My verdict, don't waste your time on this book unless you really have something against a man and can sympathize with the wife.
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