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While Kidd places an obvious importance on the role of mysticism and legend in this tale, including the mysterious mermaid's chair at the center of the island's history, the relationships between characters is what gives this novel its true weight. Once she returns to her childhood home, Jessie is forced to confront not only her relationship with her estranged mother, but her other emotional ties as well. After decades of marriage to Hugh, her practical yet conventional husband, Jessie starts to question whether she is craving an independence she never had the chance to experience. After she meets Brother Thomas, a handsome monk who has yet to take his final vows, Jessie is forced to decide whether passion can coexist with comfort, or if the two are mutually exclusive. As her soul begins to reawaken, Jessie must also confront the circumstances of her father's death, a tragedy that continues to haunt Jessie and Nelle over thirty years later.
By boldly tackling such major themes as love, betrayal, grief, and forgiveness, The Mermaid Chair forces readers to question whether moral issues can always be interpreted in black or white. It is this ability to so gracefully present multiple sides of a story that reinforces Kidd's reputation as a well-respected modern literary voice. --Gisele Toueg --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Lovely language and imagery. Took me into another world with all the detail and unusual characters that inhabit it. I especially loved the fact that there are no facile answers. Read morePublished 15 hours ago by Guinan02
This was a nice simple story. It felt it was somewhat predictable which didn't make it so exciting. Read morePublished 6 days ago by Margarita
I found this to be a silly read. I did not like the main character or care about her selfish behavior. I finished the book because I presumed it had to improvePublished 11 days ago by historical fiction reader
I read this because it was recommended by so many. But as I toiled through the overly descriptive passages (I got weary of reading that every breath of air had some dramatic... Read morePublished 16 days ago by corvus corax
Really good read. Great character development, interesting plot. Would recommend. My second Sue Monk book and have been quite pleased.Published 1 month ago by Linda Curtis
I loved this book and the characters in it. All of them flawed and all of them well intentioned. The fact that the book ends with the main character back where she started only... Read morePublished 1 month ago by nigel barnard
The story in itself was okay and believable to me but what I didn't like was all the fantasy about the mermaids and other freakish goings on None of it seemed like it was real... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Joanne Sellner
I don't know exactly why this book touched me. It was dark and damp and unusual at times, but I loved it! Kind of a "Thorn Birds" American style. Read morePublished 1 month ago by mj