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The Mermaid Chair

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I loved Sue Monk Kidd’s first novel, The Secret Life of Bees. Loved it. I didn’t love this book quite as much, but it does have the same magical and poetic quality of her earlier blockbuster.

I must admit I worried about this new novel. It must be so hard for a novelist to follow a debut novel like The Secret Life of Bees, but Kidd does a good job – not amazing, but good. The new novel contains a similar elegant understanding of women, a deep empathy for the spirituality and sensuality of women, a sensitivity to the power and maddening challenge of some mother-daughter relationships.

Sue Monk Kidd is one of those rare novelists who says things either in the narrator’s or a character’s voice that are so profound, you have to pause and put the book down for a minute. For example, she writes, “Falling in love was the oldest, most ruthless catalyst on earth.” Isn’t it refreshing to be given pause by a novel?

This is a book you’ll enjoy – especially if you’ve been on a diet of crime novels or crank-‘em-out blockbusters. Don’t expect the once in a decade magic of The Secret Life of Bees, but do expect an enjoyable read from Sue Monk Kidd’s new bestseller – The Mermaid Chair. On the Book Beat for KSL Newsradio 1160, I’m Amanda Dickson.

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