- Hardcover: 528 pages
- Publisher: Charnwood (Large Print); Large type edition edition (October 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0708989160
- ISBN-13: 978-0708989166
- Product Dimensions: 22.4 x 14.6 x 3.6 cm
- Shipping Weight: 739 g
- Average Customer Review: 118 customer reviews
Ladder of Years Hardcover – Oct 1996
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|Hardcover, Oct 1996||
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From Library Journal
Delia Grinstead begins a new life in Tyler's (Saint Maybe, Audio Reviews, LJ 5/15/93) latest by simply walking away from her family's vacation at the beach. She spends the next year reinventing herself, no longer the doctor's faithful and timid wife, the dutiful mother of three, the practical sister. Finally, she discovers a life of her own; for the first time she is independent, away from the home and practice her husband inherited from her father. The detachment the author puts Delia through is common Tyler territory: at times surprising, at times perfectly mundane as Delia re-creates a life and an identity in almost idyllic Bayborough, Maryland. C.J. Critt gives her usual skillful narration. Tyler fans will appreciate the familiar twists on the commonplace and the author's endearing characters. For most public libraries.?Joyce Kessel, Villa Maria Coll., Buffalo, N.Y.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Anne Tyler was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 1941, but grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina. She graduated at nineteen from Duke University and went to do graduate work in Russian studies at Columbia University. Anne Tyler has written thirteen novels. Breathing Lessons was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1988. She is a member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. She and her husband, Taghi Modarressi, live in Baltimore, Maryland.
About the Reader
Barbara Barrie has appeared on Broadway in Torch Song Trilogy, California Suite, and The Prisoner of Second Avenue, among others. Her film credits include The Passage, Private Benjamin, and Breaking Away. Her television appearances include Scarlet, Law & Order, thirtysomething, Family Ties, and Barney Miller. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Many events that take place in Ladder of Years "just happen." Loose ends pop up from the very beginning, and despite the quiet, lovely writing style of Anne Tyler, you begin to wonder if she is always this careless in her books.
It does get frustrating, and it doesn't help that you can never decide if Delia is a sympathetic character or just a pathetic one. She is essentially a good person but, as her actions show and the other characters often seem to think, she is also a childish, indecisive woman who doesn't know what she wants. I seesawed between empathising with Delia and wanting to shake the teeth out of her. Her convictions are wispy, unreliable. Delia told herself she'd just stay a few days in Bay Borough. She ends up staying a year. She "knows" she'd never work for Joel Miller. She ends up working for Joel Miller.
Having said all of this, you're probably wondering why I gave the book such a high rating. Ladder of Years is worth it. The second half of the book found me completely engrossed in the story. I began to understand why the first half of the novel is told at such a leisurely pace, the parallels Tyler is able to draw as a result and that the loose ends that seemed like loose ends are in fact more telling of Delia Grinstead than sloppiness on the part of author. Delia did not have an identity for most of her life. She managed to bypass her chance of acquiring one as a young woman by marrying the first man that appeared on the doorstep, without first pausing to find out who she was. Her belated journey to do so, as accidental and completely unplanned as it was, is endearing and wonderful to witness. Yes, I highly recommend this loopy tragicomic fairytale.