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Mrs. Kimble

 
 
Author
Jennifer Haigh.
Publisher Harper Perennial  
Format paperback
Product Dimensions 8.25 x 5.6 x 1.1 inches
ISBN 9780062062611
Pages/Publication Date 410/2011
Daedalus Item Code 44359
This item is not available.
Description
(Winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut Fiction) A chameleon, an enigma, all things to all women, Ken Kimble is a serial husband, portrayed through the eyes of the women he seduces, in Jennifer Haigh's remarkable 2003 debut novel. Birdie, his first wife, struggles to hold herself together after his desertion; his second wife Joan, intelligent and driven, is also lonely, and sees her unknowable husband as her last chance for happiness; Dinah, once the sitter for Ken and Birdie's children, becomes his third wife.

"Haigh's luminous debut novel is the story of the three women who become the wives of Ken Kimble, a minister turned real estate agent. For all three, Kimble remains an elusive man, who at first appears to be each woman's ideal, only to reveal his true colors later on. Haigh introduces Kimble's first wife, Birdie, after he has already abandoned her and their two children, Charlie and Jody. Only 26 when he leaves her, Birdie falls into depression and alcoholism while trying to provide for her children. Kimble meets his second wife, Joan, while engaged to a 19-year-old college dropout. At 39, Joan is recovering from breast cancer and a subsequent mastectomy that she has told no one about. Kimble is a welcome presence in the lonely, never-married Joan's life, and when he and his fiancée begin to quarrel, she impulsively invites him to move in with her. Kimble's third wife, Dinah, is young enough to be his daughter, and indeed, used to baby-sit for his children when he was married to Birdie. Highly sensitive about the birthmark that mars her face, Dinah allows Kimble to pay for a procedure to have it removed. Each Mrs. Kimble is vulnerable to the manipulative Ken in one way or another, and each manages to delude herself about truly seeing him for what he is, even when all of the evidence is right in front of her. The women are both weak and strong in their own ways, and the ending proves that Kimble may have done some good in spite of himself. A beautiful novel with memorable, vibrant characters."—Booklist (starred review)

 
 
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