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The Pull of the Moon: A Novel (Random House Reader's Circle) [Kindle Edition]

Elizabeth Berg
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (178 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $14.00
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $4.01 (29%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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A Spool of Blue Thread
The story of the Whitshank family told in Anne Tyler's hallmark setting—Baltimore. Read the full description | Learn more about the author

Book Description

BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Elizabeth Berg's Once Upon a Time, There Was You.

Uncomfortable with the fit of her life, now that she's in the middle of it, Nan gets into her car and just goes--driving across the country on back roads, following the moon; and stopping to talk to people.  Through conversations with women, men, with her husband through letters, and with herself through her diary, Nan confronts topics long overdue for her attention.  She writes to her husband and says things she's never admitted before; and she discovers how the fabric of her life can be reshaped into a more authentic creation.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

What (in Range of Motion) seemed an unerring touch for the emotional truths of women's lives proves imperfect after all for Berg, who misses the mark in this story of a wife and mother who runs away to find herself. In a plot device reminiscent of Ann Tyler's Ladder of Years, Berg's protagonist, Nan, impulsively leaves her Massachusetts home soon after she turns 50, hitting the road to find a new sense of direction. "I have felt so long like I am drowning," she explains in a letter to her husband, Martin, as she begins a car trip westward with no destination in mind except to "come into my own." She chronicles both the geographical terrain and her inner landscape in further letters to Martin and to her grown daughter, Ruthie, and in a journal that has the tone of an adolescent's diary. Women will empathize with Nan's fear of aging and her gradual realization of the resentment she has long felt about filling the role of dutiful wife, but the epistolary device strips the story of immediacy, and the situations Nan describes are often unlikely or merely tame (she has a noisy tantrum at a beauty salon when she decides not to dye her gray hair; she invites a stranger into her cabin in the Minnesota woods and, when they go to bed, they just cuddle). Nan's conversations with other women are overdosed with saccharine, and her epiphanies are old hat. Self-indulgent and cloying, this is a one-tone narrative with almost none of the dramatic resonance Berg's fans have learned to expect.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Berg (Range of Motion, LJ 8/95) uses letters and diary entries to tell the story of 50-year-old Nan, who is coming to terms with her place in society as an older woman. The letters, written to her husband, attempt to explain her unplanned cross-country flight. The diary entries allow Nan to probe deeper into her past and to explore the reasons for her loss of self-esteem. Conveniently, Nan is a woman of privilege traveling in relative comfort, with no concern for the financing of her trip. Her letters to her husband include instructions to contact their architect so that on her return they can plan a new house she describes in fanciful detail. She has little or no anxiety about how her husband might react to her flight, and there seems to be nothing in her life beyond her relationship with him and with her college-age daughter. Berg's somewhat superficial treatment of an individual in transition is not altogether satisfying. Recommended for larger public libraries.?Rebecca A. Stuhr-Rommereim, Grinnell Coll. Libs., Ia.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1220 KB
  • Print Length: 242 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: B0092FLX3C
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books (March 18, 2010)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0036S4B6C
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #190,747 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
66 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Berg is tuned in to a perfect frequency.... December 10, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I have never read a book that was so exquisitely tuned into the mind and feelings of the human condition. The lead character is turning 50 years old and decides to take a road trip. Oh, she's not headed anywhere special on the map, but this trip couldn't be more important.
As Nan meanders across the country on those back roads that only the towns people use, she is content to pull up and set for a spell on the porch of a woman that seems to know exactly why she came, though the two have never met. She sits down to meals in diners with complete strangers and finds she has more in common with them than she might expect.
Along the way she writes letters to her husband, honestly pouring her heart out to him, letting him know how their comfortable day to day saunter through life may not always have been all that was expected. The trip is a revelation for both of them in the end.
This is a coming of age book, it points out the wisdom that gradually permeates the mind and spirit as we ripen with time. I can't begin to tell you how revealing Berg's insights are, I got the feeling that she went through life taking notes on all of those little things that we experience and never give a thought to, little, insidious things that can impact our outlook on life in the most profoundest of manners. Read this book and I promise you won't be disappointed, you will find yourself in the midst of more than your share of "a-hah" moments and this book will make you realize just what a comforting thing that can be. 12/10/00
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars In search of oneself.. January 12, 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Elizabeth Berg's THE PULL OF THE MOON is the story of Nan, and her search for herself. She's in her 50's and has decided to leave her husband (temporarily) and travel the country, looking for what, she does not know. She sends letters to her husband Martin throughout this entire trip, revealing to the reader what is going on in her head as she goes from town to town, doing things she enjoyed doing but felt her husband never understood. She finds joy in the little things, taking time to talk to people along the way.
A lot of her letters are angry, some are sad. She loves her husband, but as many women feel as they approach middle age, she feels burnt out and neglected. She's been taken for granted, and she wants to change it all.
I think a lot of women will be able to relate to Nan and her journey to find herself. It's an easy read; took me only a few days to finish. I'm not 50 yet, but I could understand her frustrations. Elizabeth Berg is the master of "chick books" I think, and I always come away from one of her books with a "I can relate!" feeling. If you are an Elizabath Berg fan, this is another great read!
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58 of 68 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Get a life, Nan! July 7, 2004
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is the story of a bored, rich housewife with too much time and money on her hands. She feels unsatisfied with her life at fifty--like all of her best years have passed her by--and her solution is not to try a new career, do some volunteering, or see a therapist. Instead she opts for the dramatic route and hops in her Mercedes for a solo cross-country road trip, writing increasingly insipid letters to her poor husband as she continues on her way.
Nan whines and complains about how her husband doesn't appreciate her, but we never see much about her to appreciate. Apparently he is the breadwinner, and for that he is chastised because a) they have too much money and b) he is preoccupied and c) he never followed his original dream of becoming a scientist. Yet someone has to earn the money to pay for the Mercedes, the road trip and the beach house that Nan insists they buy and decorate according to her exact specifications. For someone who boldly accuses Martin of making too much money, Nan sure does have expensive and particular tastes. It also takes a lot of chutzpah to accuse her husband of "selling out" when Nan never even reveals what, if any, dreams she ever had. She certainly gives us no indication that she has realized any of them, either.
I am not against the idea of a middle-aged woman "running away" from her life. I loved the novel "Ladder of Years" by Anne Tyler. But in that novel, we are shown what the protagonist is running from. In this one, the only indication we are given about why Nan runs away is that her husband is preoccupied and she feels old. I'm sorry, but there are too many women out there worried about feeding their families, making house payments, balancing jobs and families, etc. to make my heart bleed for Nan.
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30 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An inspirational view of life December 6, 1999
Format:Mass Market Paperback
If you have ever been lost especially lost within yourself, you can't afford not to read this book! Elizabeth Berg gives us a story of a woman who is lost and runs away from home to find herself. The Pull of the Moon is a well-written story that is impossible to put down.
I have never read anything quite like it, and would be insulting this book's integrity if I compared it to any other book I have read. I loved everything about this book from the way it was written to the way it moved me. Words simply cannot express how wonderful this book is.
My suggestion, Buy it! Find a nice quiet place and prepare yourself to experience a range of emotions and inspiration, and fall in love with this book and its values like so many others have.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars I love Elizabeth Berg
I love Elizabeth Berg! I have read many of her books and I can't wait to read more. This is the second time I have read this book, that is why I bought it. Read more
Published 20 days ago by Tracey Hayes
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A fun read
Published 1 month ago by Kindle Customer
1.0 out of 5 stars TEDIOUS AND BORING
I always finish books. Not this one. I have read most of Elizabeth Berg' s work, and consider myself a fan. Read more
Published 1 month ago by elle ohallorahan
5.0 out of 5 stars Great!
Great little book and fun to read. I want to take a road trip just like this one.
Published 4 months ago by Kindle Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
a Summer's night good read
Published 4 months ago by ROMANTIC AT HEART
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Resonates with women of a certain age...
Published 5 months ago by F. M. Belmonte
4.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing journey...but to what end?
I recently picked up this novel at used book sale. Being 46 myself, I was intrigued by the idea of a woman turning 50 and deciding to run away. Read more
Published 5 months ago by doctor_beth
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
It used God's name in vain. Appalling to a Christian.
Published 6 months ago by Larry Lovelace
5.0 out of 5 stars book was fun to read & a chance to put the reader in the script!
Great read ..... I'll be reading many more Eliizabeth Berg books! I can't wait to read the next one....on wish list!
Published 7 months ago by Rosemary Taylor
5.0 out of 5 stars It was excellent. If your are approaching 50 a very good ...
It was excellent. If your are approaching 50 a very good read. I remember my own approaching 50 I did a similar thing. Read more
Published 7 months ago by mike kussman
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More About the Author

Elizabeth Berg won the NEBA Award for fiction for her body of work, and was a finalist for the ABBY for Talk Before Steep. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications, including Ladies' Home Journal, Redbook, and the New York Times Magazine. She has also taught a writing workshop at Radcliffe College. She lives near Boston, Massachusetts.

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