Review: The Memory Keeper’s Daughter

May 26, 2007

The Memory Keeper’s Daughter
by Kim Edwards

Grade: B-

The Synopsis: David and Norah Henry are a young couple having their first child in the 1960’s. David Henry is a doctor, specializing in bones. Norah goes into labor on a snowy day, and the doctor who planned to meet them at David Henry’s clinic doesn’t make it. David delivers the baby himself, with the help of his nurse Caroline Gill.
Norah gives birth to twins–a boy and a girl with Down syndrome. David gives the baby girl to the nurse and tells her to take the baby to an institution. Instead, Caroline takes the baby herself and raises her.
David tells his wife that the second baby died, and from that point forward, they are never the same happy couple. Norah is torn apart by grief for her dead daughter, and David deals with the guilt of lying and causing her this grief.

The Review: The first chapter of this book gripped me with the story of David and Norah’s meeting and marriage. However, when David gave the baby away I just wanted to stop reading.
I found the book fairly boring and it did not captivate me, apart from the occasionally chapter where things actually happen. Norah flirts with alcoholism, and then nothing comes of it, she just stops drinking. Time moves on, but much of the writing does not move the plot forward. It feels quiet and depressing.
The book covers a serious topic, but I felt that the connection between readers and characters was not very strong. This could be a personal thing on my part, as the character I felt most connected with was the teenage son.
It is a best seller, so perhaps you should judge for yourself, but if you are looking for something fun to read, this book is not it.

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2 Responses to “Review: The Memory Keeper’s Daughter”

  1. itllbegoodtho Says:

    Thanks for the feedback on my new blog! I followed your ID to this site, and saw that, I too, had read your book review earlier in the day. Your blog came up as one of the most recent entries (with an english title), so I checked it out.
    I had a blog on yahoo but decided to switch over.

    Have seen this book on the SkyTrain here in Vancouver and have been wondering if it is worth a read.

  2. jenefur Says:

    Thought it was an interesting book as well, but could have been so much better!

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