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The Pleasing Hour: A Novel by [Lily King]

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The Pleasing Hour: A Novel Kindle Edition

3.9 out of 5 stars 446 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

With longing and sweetness, this subtle and gorgeously crafted novel takes us into a tangle of family affections. The story is an old one: Rosie, an American au pair on a Paris houseboat, falls in love first with the children she helps care for and then with their father, Marc. Their mother, Nicole, is as edgy, hard-faceted, and lovely as a diamond. As we travel the year with this family, all is revealed: Rosie's giving up the child she deliberately conceived to her cherished sister, who cannot have children; Nicole's history in a place called Plaire, where a situation similar to Rosie's shaped her and her own mother forever. The three children spring to exuberant life: little Guillaume, with his faith and his fears; Lola, who loves Rosie at once; and Odile, patterning her mother and pushing against her. Above all, there is Marc, who wants his wife to love him and finds a way to that through Rosie. It is in Plaire that both Rosie and Nicole find a resolution of sorts with their pasts and with each other. The play of French against American, of fresh hurts against old but still aching ones, of lovers and mothers, is gently woven in language of great purity. GraceAnne A. DeCandido --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


King tells this haunting tale of surrogate histories and maternal betrayals with a narrative that slips among time, place and points of view; to her credit, she manages to perform this juggling act without breaking a sweat. -- The Los Angeles Times, Mark Rozzo

Lily King's splendid new novel,
The Pleasing Hour, consists of one beginning after another, all so assured that it's hard to believe the book itself is her debut. -- The New York Times Book Review, Jacqueline Carey --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B004CFAT0U
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Grove Press (March 22, 2010)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ March 22, 2010
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 6842 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 258 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    3.9 out of 5 stars 446 ratings

About the author

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Lily King grew up in Massachusetts and received her B.A. in English Literature from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her M.A. in Creative Writing from Syracuse University. She has taught English and Creative Writing at several universities and high schools in this country and abroad.

Lily’s first novel, The Pleasing Hour (1999) won the Barnes and Noble Discover Award and was a New York Times Notable Book and an alternate for the PEN/Hemingway Award. Her second, The English Teacher, was a Publishers Weekly Top Ten Book of the Year, a Chicago Tribune Best Book of the Year, and the winner of the Maine Fiction Award. Her third novel, Father of the Rain (2010), was a New York Times Editors Choice, a Publishers Weekly Best Novel of the Year and winner of both the New England Book Award for Fiction and the Maine Fiction Award. Lily's new novel, Euphoria, was released in June 2014. It has drawn significant acclaim so far, being named an Amazon Book of the Month, on the Indie Next List, and hitting numerous summer reading lists from The Boston Globe to O Magazine and USA Today. Reviewed on the cover of The New York Times, Emily Eakin called Euphoria, “a taut, witty, fiercely intelligent tale of competing egos and desires in a landscape of exotic menace.”

Lily is the recipient of a MacDowell Fellowship and a Whiting Writer's Award. Her short fiction has appeared in literary magazines including Ploughshares and Glimmer Train, as well as in several anthologies.

Customer reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5
446 global ratings

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