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Topic: Suggestions for Relationship stories

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Subject: Suggestions for Relationship stories
Date Posted: 1/15/2009 1:21 PM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2009
Posts: 2
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Hi all, I've found my tastes for reading have really changed depending on what's going on in my life. 

Right now, I'm into stories about relationships.  Not just man-woman, but all sorts of relationships.  I like examining how people interact with each other and thinking about it.


I know its a broad topic, but any stellar recommendations come to mind? 


Thanks in Advance!

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 1:36 PM ET
Member Since: 10/27/2007
Posts: 2,287
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Well, one story that comes to mind for me is The Kite Runner.  The story (and I won't give anything away here) is about a relationship between 2 young boys.  You follow along as they grow up, one from a priveleged life and another one not.  The things one of the boys learns later on in life about the relationship is very moving.  I cannot  say anymore other than this book stayed with me (mentally) for a very long time - and still does.  I honestly couldn't even read another book for almost a month after reading this book. 

There are so many other aspects of this book I enjoyed but the main point is the relationship.  While it takes place in a foreign country, it is not hard to follow along at all. 

Last Edited on: 1/15/09 1:36 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/15/2009 2:54 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2007
Posts: 3,237
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The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler is the first book that came to mind. The protagonist is actually a man who's closed himself off from most of his relationships, and the book is about his learning to open up and relate to people again. I adore this book!

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 4:33 PM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2009
Posts: 2
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Oh that's sounds great Janelle, very much up my alley!  I will look up Kite runner too Wendy, thanks!

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 5:44 PM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2006
Posts: 1,366
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I totally agree with Janella, THE ACCIDENTAL TOURIST is a wonderful "relationship" novel, but than I think most of Anne Tyler's novels are....wonderful "relationship" novels!

I recently read BACK WHEN WE WERE GROWNUPS, by Anne Tyler.  The story is about a woman in her 50's looking back on all the important relationships in her life.  She reflects on the choices she made as well as the "what ifs."  This could have been just a story about a mid-life crises, but it is much more!  It is a thoughtful reflection on the meaning of life defined by choices.  This novel has many funny, even laugh out loud moments as well as touching ones and full of wonderful and not so wonderful relationships!

Last Edited on: 1/15/09 5:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/15/2009 8:47 PM ET
Member Since: 6/21/2008
Posts: 6,567
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The Breakdown Lane by Jacquelyn Mitchard is an interesting book about a woman's relationship to her husband, her children (especially her oldest, a son with some learning disabiities), her illness (MS) and life when it all falls apart for a while. 

The Bean Trees and the sequel, Pigs in Heaven, are two fun books by Barbara Kingsolver about relationships of all kinds and has an interesting side about the relationships of people who are members of American Indian tribes.

Shogun is a very facinating novel about the love relationship between a Samurai woman and a European man, the Catholic Church and feudal Japanese people, the family relationships of the Samurai in the 1600's and how all of these relationships affected our history.

Some of the most intesting books about realtionships in non-fiction have to be the modern day books about Princess Diana and her relationships within the Royal Family of England.  I can't name a specific book for you, but I'll bet there are many here at PBS.

Date Posted: 1/17/2009 3:18 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2007
Posts: 12,862
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Last Edited on: 1/17/09 3:19 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/21/2009 7:05 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 2,276
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This is real mainstream stuff, but Luanne Rice's books are relationship-based fiction. Always a good read, and while there is usually romance, her stories involve the many relationships in our lives; family, old friends, lovers, etc.

Date Posted: 1/21/2009 7:44 PM ET
Member Since: 7/2/2008
Posts: 91
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I'll second those Anne Tyler recommendations!  Breathing Lessons, and Digging to America were 2 recent Tyler reads for me and I enjoyed them both! Elizabeth Berg's books typically explore relationships and are very satisfying.   Angry Housewives Eating Bon-Bons by Lorna Landvick was about a group of women who were neighbors and decided to start a book club---lots about their relationships with each other, their parents, their in-laws, their spouses and their kids.

I'm sure I'll think of some more and will need to come back and edit/amend this response! 



Date Posted: 1/26/2009 1:56 AM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2008
Posts: 333
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Try reading Elizaabeth Berg, she's great.

Date Posted: 1/26/2009 2:32 AM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,804
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Swimming Lessons - Lynne Hugo and Anna Tuttle Villegas

Any book by Adriana Trigiani

Any book by Jodi Picoult

Belva Plain books

Last Edited on: 1/31/09 12:49 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/30/2009 5:06 PM ET
Member Since: 4/3/2007
Posts: 699
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I was going to suggest Elizabeth Berg books, but I see Virginia beat me to it.  :o)