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The Woman Upstairs: A Novel Paperback – December 4, 2010
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More About the Author
Her latest novels are: a western based on Don Quixote, described as a "bold and sexy chase" and entitled The Adventures of Don Valiente and the Apache Canyon Kid (co-authored with John A. Aragon of Santa Fe, NM), and a novel that explores food addiction -- Rita Just Wants to Be Thin (2014). (The image is one of the author of Rita, demonstrating the point she makes in the book. :) )
In addition to writing fiction, Mary works with academics and other researchers as an editor and consultant on grant applications, articles, monographs and books. Her first non-fiction book, Write an Effective Funding Application: A Guide for Researchers and Scholars was published by The Johns Hopkins University Press.
Mary has won a Writers Guild of Alberta Award for Excellence in Writing and an Alberta Achievement Award, and she is listed in Who's Who in Canada. Her short fiction has been short-listed for such prizes as the CBC/Saturday Night Fiction Competition and the Journey Prize, and has been published in more than a dozen literary journals and magazines.
Mary is a former editor in chief at Lone Pine Publishing, and has worked as awards facilitator at the University of Saskatchewan.
Visit her website at marywwalters.com
Top Customer Reviews
Once you start to read the book, you'll want to just keep going until you're finished. An excellent novel.
This novel by Mary W. Walters was first published in 1989, Amazon tells me.
The main character, Diana Guthrie, is seen heading back to her childhood home, where she has not been for 15 years; driven away by not only a strict and seemingly loveless mother, but by the generally restrictive atmosphere in the small town she grew up in as well as by a tragic event that changed her life forever and left her scarred.
She is going there now because she feels it is the right thing to do: she was told her mother is dying.
Already on the way back, her mind goes back and forth between past and present. We learn about the way things were dealt with at the Guthrie household, and begin to understand why Diana wanted to leave, HAD to leave in order for being a person in her own right.
Once arrived, Diana gets mixed reactions from the people there - her brother, an old school friend, the housekeeper, the family doctor and others -, and she herself is thrown into a turmoil of conflicting emotions, too.
It takes a while before she decides to climb the stairs and meet "the woman upstairs" who is, of course, her mother.
The book ends on a note that leaves the reader to imagine what Diana is going to do next; stay or leave again? Has she really begun to come to terms with the past?
I liked this novel. It was well written, atmospheric, and I could picture the places and characters in my mind.Read more ›
The only reason this book gets four rather than five stars is the ending. The whole novel is building up to the moment when Diana finally develops the courage to face her dying mother, and I would have liked to see a more clear resolution between them. The lack of this feels very true to life, but it leaves my readerly wishes for a happier ending unsatisfied.
This was a beautiful and highly readable novel. I loved the descriptions of Edmonton and Ontario. I grew up in a prairie city and later moved to Ontario, and I found the descriptions were dead on. The nuanced look at families and generations of women put me in mind of one of my favourite writers, Margaret Laurence. I look forward to reading more by this author.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was different from the book I thought I was ordering, however, I loved it.Published 11 months ago by Nancy O. Straus
This was an interesting book until the author carries on about the young woman and her relationship with her mother and grandmother. Read morePublished 16 months ago by sharon green
A Mother lies dying. Her children, caught in the roles created in their childhoods. Only the girl thinks about how they came to this place. I didn't notice any answers. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Kindle Customer
interesting character study of a woman effected by the suicide of her childhood love and the wall that her unacknowledged anger creates. Read morePublished 19 months ago by antbethf
Yeah, I liked it. Left me hanging a little. Definitely lots of deep thinking - not much action if that's what you're looking for.Published 21 months ago by Elaine Hackney
This story could've been better. I liked the fact that it was set in Canada and that a daughter had issues with her family, especially her mother, but the way this book ended was... Read morePublished on January 28, 2014 by Richard Poirier
This book captured the raw emotional pain of people who don't understand each other and are not emotionally mature enough to see the other's perspective. Very we'll written.Published on October 14, 2013 by Larrie M. Thorne
I could not put this book down. I found the technique of Diana's journeys into the past as present day incidences triggered memory intriguing, and I continued reading so as to... Read morePublished on August 26, 2013 by pat dalphy
This is the perfect book for a plane. Very engaging; great character development with a story line to which is easy to relatePublished on August 6, 2013 by jeannie butler