Family Pictures: A Novel

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9780060163976: Family Pictures: A Novel

A Masterful, Engrossing Novel About The Life Of A Large Family That Is Deeply Bounded By The Stranger In Their Midst -- An Autistic Child

The whole world could not have broken the spirit and strength of the Eberhardt family of 1948. Lainey is a wonderful if slightly eccentric mother. David is a good father, sometimes sarcastic, always cool-tempered. Two wonderful children round out the perfect picture. Then the next child arrives -- and life is never the same again. Over the next forty years, the Eberhardt family struggles to survive a flood tide of upheaval and heartbreak, love and betrayal, passion and pain...hoping they can someday heal their hearts.

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About the Author:

Sue Miller is the bestselling author of While I Was Gone, The Distinguished Guest, For Love, Family Pictures, Inventing the Abbotts, and The Good Mother. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

From Publishers Weekly:

If Miller's new novel does not have the shock value of The Good Mother , it benefits from a deeper, more subtle conception of character and a sure sense of the complexities of family relationships. When their third child, Randall, is diagnosed as autistic in 1954, the happy marriage of Lainey and David Eberhardt begins to disintegrate. Subscribing to then-current medical theories, David, a psychiatrist, blames Randall's disease on Lainey. She retaliates with three subsequent pregnancies, "accidents" that result in the little girls whom their father sardonically calls "the last straws." Seguing among the points of view of various family members, the narrative poignantly illustrates the widening effects of a domestic tragedy. As the Eberhardts' marriage goes awry, the children are wounded by David's emotional withdrawal and eventual departure, Lainey's hysterical need to prove she is "a good mother," and the daily pain of living with and caring for a mentally impaired sibling with powerfully destructive urges. Miller again displays a perfect ear for the dialogue between parents and children. In depicting the contrast between the Eberhardts' responses to their son's affliction--David's scientific evaluation, Lainey's spiritual courage--she demonstrates the ways in which parenthood is a "kind of reckless courage . . . a possibility for anguish and pain, and yet a miracle." 125,000 first printing; $125,000 ad/promo; BOMC main selection; author tour.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Miller, Sue
Published by Harper & Row (1990)
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