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Loving Frank: A Novel Paperback – April 8, 2008
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"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
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“This graceful, assured first novel tells the remarkable story of the long-lived affair between Frank Lloyd Wright, a passionate and impossible figure, and Mamah Cheney, a married woman whom Wright beguiled and led beyond the restraint of convention. It is engrossing, provocative reading.”
“It takes great courage to write a novel about historical people, and in particular to give voice to someone as mythic as Frank Lloyd Wright. This beautifully written novel about Mamah Cheney and Frank Lloyd Wright’s love affair is vivid and intelligent, unsentimental and compassionate.”
“I admire this novel, adore this novel, for so many reasons: The intelligence and lyricism of the prose. The attention to period detail. The epic proportions of this most fascinating love story. Mamah Cheney has been in my head and heart and soul since reading this book; I doubt she’ ll ever leave.”
“Loving Frank is one of those novels that takes over your life. It’s mesmerizing and fascinating–filled with complex characters, deep passions, tactile descriptions of astonishing architecture, and the colorful immediacy of daily life a hundred years ago–all gathered into a story that unfolds with riveting urgency.”
About the Author
Nancy Horan, a former journalist and longtime resident of Oak Park, Illinois, now lives and writes on an island in Puget Sound.
From the Hardcover edition.
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“I have been standing on the side of life, watching it float by. I want to swim in the river. I want to feel the current.”
This caught me from the very beginning and is the crux of the story. Loving Frank is not about Frank Lloyd Wright as it is about Mamah Borthwick Cheney... a mother, a wife and a woman amidst the growing women’s movement in this country. Frank was a spoilt child who was doted upon by his mother and he grew up to be a self centered and arrogant man with extraordinary talent and a gift but still doted upon by his mother. Yes, he had many good qualities and attributes; but it was Mamah who brought these out in him. Loving Frank was not easy for Mamah.
Reading Loving Frank is not easy for the reader either. One has to put aside personal feelings and judgement of Mamah. If you can do that, I think you will find something well worth reading.
* I suggest that you read Loving Frank FIRST and then go to Wikipedia and look up Frank Lloyd Wright. I think this will help the pieces to fall into place without spoilers.