The Amateur Marriage Author:Anne Tyler They seemed like the perfect couple. The moment Pauline, a stranger to the Polish Eastern Avenue neighborhood of Baltimore, walked into his mother's grocery store, Michael was smitten. And in the heat of WWII fervor, they are propelled into a hasty wedding.But they never should have married. — Pauline, impulsive, impractical, tumbles hit-or miss ... more »through life; Michael, plodding, cautious, judgemental, proceeds deliberately. While other young marrieds, equally ignorant at the start, seemed to grow more seasoned, Pauline and Michael remain amateurs. In time their foolish quarrels take their toll. Even when they find themselves, almost 30 years later, loving, instant parents to a little grandson named Pagan, whom they rescue from California, they still cannot bridge their deep-rooted differences. Flighty Pauline clings to the motion that the rifts can always be patched. To the unyielding Michael, they become unbearable.
From the sound of the cash register in the old grocery to the counter-culture jargon of the 60's, Anne Tyler captures the evocative nuances of everyday life during these decades with such telling precision that every page brings smiles of recognition. Throughout, as each of the competing voices bears a witness, we are drawn ever more fully into the complex entaglements of family life in this wise, embracing, and deeply perceptive hovel.« less