In a series of interlocked stories Louise Farmer Smith, the author of ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF MARRIAGE, pierces the myths through four generations of one American family’s mismatched marriages–the teenage girl lifted out of the hunger and chaos that followed the Civil War; the suicidal wife isolated on the Oklahoma prairie; the china painter whose husband cannot make a living; and her daughter who dreamed of luxury. Dark? Yes, but full of humor too. These six stories move backward in time to search out the influences on the next generation–the standards, prejudices, and overheard conversations that they forget but carry with them when they choose a spouse.
This novel in stories is a practical pre-history of the momentum leading to women’s liberation. It is a substantial addition to the social history of American women. Thoroughly researched the stories compellingly paint the settings of post-Civil War pioneer life and the female-dominated 40s, with the men at war.
I received this book from NetGalley and Upper Hand Press in exchange for an honest review.
One Hundred Years of Marriage, by Louise Farmer Smith, was an entertaining and interesting read to say the least.
The story is about the legacy that follows four women across generations. The stories move fast and were hard to keep straight. I found myself reading the same passages and chapters over and over because I got lost in the story. From one paragraph to the next you weren’t really sure whose story you were reading.
I think in the same manner so about half way through the book I was able to understand the quick pace a little more clearly. I did enjoy the stories and felt a kinship with each woman. With each generation, each woman tried to do the opposite of the woman before her and ended up with the same issues.
A good moral for this story would be to never try to live your life opposed.
Despite the century or decade of the woman in each story you caught a glimpse of liberation that hasn’t been reached for women. We’re still taught to be nice, to calm our men and to tend the children. None of this has changed. I appreciated that the author was truthful without being obnoxious.
The entire time I was reading this book, I kept thinking that it would make a great mini-series on cable.
An interesting story none the less.