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The Abortionist's Daughter (Vintage Contemporaries) by [Hyde, Elisabeth]
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The Abortionist's Daughter (Vintage Contemporaries) Kindle Edition

3.4 out of 5 stars 62 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Dr. Diana Duprey—abortion clinic director, wife of local Colorado DA Frank Thompson and mother of 19-year-old college freshman Megan—has plenty of enemies, so when her body is found floating in the exercise pool of her garden tour–featured house, the list of suspects is long. Aside from abortion opponents and distraught parents, there were the arguments overheard between Frank and Diana, and Megan and Diana shortly before. The coroner, a woman with whom Frank had had an affair, won't do the autopsy, and a man harboring a grudge against Frank takes her place. Meanwhile, Megan finds herself attracted to Huck Berlin, the policeman assigned to the case, and Huck finds Megan in various compromising positions. Former U.S. attorney Hyde (Crazy as Chocolate) describes Megan's contradictory, confused emotions without oversimplification ("Have fun killing babies" were Megan's inadvertent last words to her mother). Hyde also jumps back in time, delving into Diana's work at the clinic and her feelings about it, as well as the lives and feelings of her clients. Rather than generating suspense, the murder provides a frame for the turbulence in and around a woman propelled by idealism and strongly held beliefs. Look for this book to get play as South Dakota's challenge to Roe v. Wade wends through the courts. 150,000 announced first printing.(June 23)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Bookmarks Magazine

Elisabeth Hyde, a former U.S. attorney, delicately handles the complex legalities of abortion as well as the physical details of the act. While most reviewers felt Hyde sets up a strong, occasionally page-turning murder story, some were put off by the number of pages on the graphic details of abortion. Most reviewers also agreed that the question of whodunit here is relatively inconsequential, especially considering the mounting doubts. What saves the story and makes it recommendable is the painfully accurate portrait of the title character's agonizing end to adolescence.

Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 608 KB
  • Print Length: 304 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0307276414
  • Publisher: Vintage (June 20, 2006)
  • Publication Date: June 20, 2006
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000GCFWO6
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,047,627 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The title of THE ABORTIONIST'S DAUGHTER suggests that the novel will center on Megan, a Colorado college student who comes from a local prominent family. Not only does her mother run the local abortion clinic, but her father is on the DA's staff. But for all their upper middle class affluence (they even have a lap pool with a motor-generated current against which to swim), the family is touched by tragedy. Megan's younger brother Ben, born with Down's Syndrome, died ten years ago at the age of four.

But while Megan does play an important role, the novel is far from just her story. On a December evening, a few weeks before Christmas, Dr. Diana Duprey is found dead in her lap pool. She has a direct line to the police department because so many threats have been made against her, but she also puts her house on an annual home design tour. Therefore, the people who had access to case her house are unlimited in number. She was seen in the company of a local religious right leader, against whom she has a restraining order, earlier that day. Her neighbor heard her engage in a screaming match with her husband, Frank, that afternoon. The local coroner takes herself off the case because she had an affair, years ago, with Frank. So just who did kill the abortionist?

While the murder mystery provides the framework for the story, the novel is much more than a whodunit. It flashes backwards as needed, slowly providing the clues needed to recreate Diana's last day, the events leading up to her murder, and the effect it has had not only on her daughter and husband, but the greater community as a whole. The slow unpeeling of the layers makes for compelling reading, and the revelations are well-paced.

However, this is a not a character study.
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Format: Hardcover
At its core, The Abortionist's Daughter is a mystery novel, but I wouldn't dare cheapen it by assigning a genre label. This is modern literary fiction at its best, with reflections on a marriage between two high-profile professionals, on the trials of raising a special needs child, on raising a teenaged daughter, and, of course, on the ethics of abortion.

The plot centers on the bludgeoning death of famed abortion doctor Diane Duprey. An outspoken activist, Duprey had garnered plenty of attention and a few public enemies in her two-decade career. She had a laundry list of restraining orders. On the other hand, her husband, the district attorney, had a violent temper, and the neighbors have heard their glass-shattering fights over the years. All of this leaves Dr, Duprey's college-age daughter, Megan, with a host of unanswered questions, including suspicions about her own father's whereabouts on the night of her mother's murder. Megan also has her own personal and romantic life to deal with, in addition to the complete upheaval of her family situation.

Author Elizabeth Hyde delivers a subtle twist in the murder of Diane Duprey, but it is only one of a half-dozen low-key (and entirely plausible) twists in the lives of this small Northeastern town. The outspoken pro-choice Reverend has several of his own skeletons in the closet, Dr. Duprey had recently violated her own retraining order to have conversations with the Reverend, Dr. Duprey's husband refuses to disclose his activities in the hours preceding his wife's death, there is a scandalous affair in the past history of the husband and wife, a cop is accused of questionable behavior with a witness, and daughter Megan has used questionable judgement in dealing with an ex-boyfriend.
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Format: Hardcover
Super book! "The Abortionist's Daughter" is engaging on many levels. It's an engrossing murder mystery that keeps you guessing to the end, but it's also much more. The characters are vividly drawn, the human relationships complex, and the dialogue rings true. And parts are very funny. The characters you'd expect in any mystery - the police detective, district attorney, forensics expert, distraught family members, etc - are deep and complicated. In the course of unfolding the mystery, Elisabeth Hyde examines and dissects the parent-teen relationship, angst of young adults, strained marriages, and the fragile line between love and loneliness.

I've read and enjoyed all of Hyde's previous books, but this one may be her best.
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Format: Hardcover
I borrowed this book from a friend... well, really she forced me to take it after she read it. She said it was great, but it didn't really sound like the usual books that I read. Well, I finally decided to read it, and was skeptical even after I read the first chapter. But something about the book pulled me in. I started reading this book before I went to work on Friday, read to about page 25 on Friday night, and then ended up finishing the book before I could go to sleep on Saturday night. It was a page turner that I did not expect, and I am thankful that the book was pushed onto me.

I liked the characters becuase they were so full of faults. Hyde presents all the problems that the characters have when she first introduces them. Then as you read more of the book, the characters's faults start to be explained and you see the other side of them as well.

I think that my favorite parts of the book were when Dr Duprey life was being examined. It was hard to read the when they described how exactly an abortion was done, but I really like the woman that this doctor was.

Some things in this book could be guessed from the beginning, but all in all the book is a great read and I highly recommend it!
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