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Breathing Lessons
Breathing Lessons
Author: Anne Tyler
Breathing Lessons is the wonderfully moving and surprising story of Ira and Maggie Moran. She's impetuous, harum-scarum, easy-going; he's competent, patient, seemingly infallible.  They've been married for 28 years.  Now, as they drive from their home in Baltimore to the funeral of Maggie's best friend's h...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780394572345
ISBN-10: 0394572343
Publication Date: 1/1/1988
Pages: 327
Rating:
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
 52

3.4 stars, based on 52 ratings
Publisher: Knopf
Book Type: Hardcover
Other Versions: Paperback, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Breathing Lessons on + 43 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
One of Anne Tyler's best books. She gets the domestic relationship between this husband and wife just right. Lovely book.
reviewed Breathing Lessons on
Helpful Score: 3
We read this delightful Pulitzer Prize winner in our book club a few months ago and had one of our liveliest discussions ever! It seemed as though each of us could relate to at least one of the characters - either we had known someone who was just like a character or (even funnier) we could see something of ourselves in one of the characters!

And if you're an Anne Tyler fan, this one is a must!
reviewed Breathing Lessons on + 11 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Discovering the extraordinary in the ordinary.
reviewed Breathing Lessons on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Did not care for this book - very disappointing!
reviewed Breathing Lessons on
Helpful Score: 2
As I remember it, this book was an excursion into a relationship between two people that are married, set against a trip as a perfect parallel. You know how conversations happen in a car on a long drive or stopped for gas or lunch that never seem to take place at home? I remember this being a sweet journey.
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reviewed Breathing Lessons on
Maggie and Ira Moran have been married for twenty-eight years and it shows. Maggie is an easy-going free spirit: impetuous, reckless and unpredictable. Her husband Ira is Maggie's polar opposite: amazingly competent, infuriatingly practical and seemingly infallible. Yet, despite all the countless petty squabbles, annoying routines and various personal eccentricities experienced in their life together, Maggie and Ira have managed to make their marriage work for almost thirty years.

Maggie considers herself to be a romantic matchmaker of sorts. Her life's ultimate mission is to unite people and bring couples together; whether they want to be connected or not. Ira secretly wonders if he should have married Ann Landers. In truth, Maggie is a meddler - a well-meaning meddler, yes, but a meddler nonetheless. She is a soft and loving person; who is determined to see only the innate goodness and limitless potential in the people she loves.

On a particularly hot summer day, the couple is driving to Deer Lick, Pennsylvania - ninety miles from their home in Baltimore - to attend the funeral of Maggie's best friend's husband. During the course of that journey, with its several unexpected detours along the way - into the lives of old friends and fully grown children, into fond memories of the past and valiant, if misguided, attempts to rearrange the present - the entire intimate story of a marriage is revealed. All the expectations, the disappointments; the way children can create storms within a family; the way that wife and husband can fall in love with each other all over again; the way that everything - and nothing - changes.

When I first started reading this book, I was expecting it to be relatively uneventful; even slightly boring. However, the story really was very interesting to me. I have always enjoyed reading Anne Tyler's work - in my opinion, she always does an excellent job with characterization and plotting. This was just such a book - a quick and easy read for me; pleasant and poignant, and filled with intricately familiar and well-developed characters. I give this book an A+!


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