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A Widow for One Year
A Widow for One Year
Author: John Irving
Ruth Cole is a complex, often self-contradictory character--a "difficult" woman.  By no means is she conventionally "nice," but she will never be forgotten. — Ruth's story is told in three parts, each focusing on a crucial time in her life.  When we first meet her--on Long Island, in the summer of 1958--Ruth is only four. — The...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780345434791
ISBN-10: 034543479X
Publication Date: 11/27/2001
Pages: 608
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.

3.6 stars, based on 150 ratings
Publisher: Fawcett
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed A Widow for One Year on + 34 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
I liked this John Irving book the best with Garp a close second. He is my favorite author and I was very pleased with this book. Anyone who has not read Irving may like this book as a first read as the characters and story are well developed and not as quirky as others he writes about (not that quirky is a bad thing).
isitfriday avatar reviewed A Widow for One Year on + 170 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I enjoyed this book, it is a long book at times it felt long, it did drag a bit a few places, but it was an entertaining read. I like John Irving's style of writing, he truly brings places and people to life, the quirks were different and made the book very interesting. I would recommend this book.
sleepyhead avatar reviewed A Widow for One Year on + 2 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
After my hungry consumption of the "The World According to Garp" I was anxious to read this but also worried that it wouldn't live up to my high hopes. I had nothing to fear, however. Like Garp, the novel follows a single person, yet many of the supporting characters have richly developed backgrounds of their own that spring off into short stories sometimes. While it may sound distracting, it lends a completeness to the book that one doesn't often find elsewhere.

We start with four-year old Ruth Cole, whose parent's marriage is fractured, to say the least. Haunted by the death of their two teenaged sons years earlier, both her mother and father have coped in vastly differnt ways. When her father hires an assistant for the summer, his presence leads to an event that will forever change the course of Ruth's life. From there we follow Ruth throughout her young adulthood and into middle-age, weaving a very differnt tale, yet still bringing in the characters from the past.

A great read that I highly recommend!
BigMama avatar reviewed A Widow for One Year on + 11 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Not one of my favorite Irving works. The characters felt weak to me in this one, something that I don't generally see in his other books. There really wasn't anyone to root for as far as I could tell.
reviewed A Widow for One Year on + 166 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Greatly acclaimed by both critics and readers, this sprawling book filled with Irving's usual array of quirky characters, spans 37 years in the life of Ruth Cole, the daughter of a 'lecherous Long Island children's book author.'
Read All 76 Book Reviews of "A Widow for One Year"

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24speedracer avatar reviewed A Widow for One Year on + 42 more book reviews
An interesting story with great characters. The best concept was the 40 year old undying love that Eddie feels.

I was not happy with the ending. It seemed to be a very simple (and way too easy) conclusion to a complicated story. I would, however, like to see the movie now. :)
reviewed A Widow for One Year on
This book was really hard to get into. Did not care for it at all.
reviewed A Widow for One Year on + 2 more book reviews
A Widow for One Year is a complex story, but boils down to two following two authors from youth to middle age in their search for happiness, love, and closure. This is complicated by a woman (mother to one, lover to the other) who fled her family, leaving behind two people to push through their sadness to find a place of contentment. The novel is well written, and the story is good. However, the book could have used some editing. A Widow for One Year - 100 pages would've been an excellent book.

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