The Wife Tree

The Wife Tree

Book - 2001
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Dorothy Speak's long-awaited first novel tells the poignant, comic and redemptive story of Morgan Hazzard, caught late in life between a dying husband and the opinions of her rebellious children. Forty years of marriage to a hard, prairie-bred man have frozen Morgan into the semblance of a steadfast wife. But when a stroke silences William Hazzard, Morgan's feelings and memories begin to thaw. She has always known how to endure: unwanted pregnancy; the deaths of two children; the anger of her husband; the harsh summers and winters of her farm childhood; the indifference of her own mother; decades of lust, lies and betrayals. What she learns in the sudden peace and quiet of her own house and in the somewhat rusty and surprising sound of her own voice  is her surprising strength and capacity for joy and change, even on the eve of her seventy-fifth birthday. More loveable than Margaret Laurence's prickly and obstinate Hagar Shipley, Morgan Hazzard is as fierce and indelible a character. And her journey, unlike Hagar's, takes her toward hope and liberation, not compromise and silence.
Publisher: [Toronto] : Random House Canada, 2001
ISBN: 9780679310662
Characteristics: 312 p


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Dec 17, 2011

This should be mandatory reading in grade 12 English, for the insight into ageing.

bruvyp Jul 06, 2011

Lovely, bittersweet story of a woman who's life has seemed meaningless in her husband's indifference and the gradual awakening of self as he is weakened by illness. I loved the format of writing which combines unsent letters to her daughters and her own thoughts and observations. My big surprise was that the setting of the fictional town of Simplicity "near London" is actually Woodstock where the author grew up. You will recognize familiar streets and places.

Aug 15, 2008

Boy does this book hit the Canadian isolation theme on the head! Somewhat bleak but a real interesting story, with some shocking revelations throughout. I enjoyed the book and was happy to have read it.

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