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This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 580 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* This is the story of how best-selling novelist Patchett (State of Wonder, 2011) became a writer. As a young child in California and, after her parents’ divorce, Nashville, she knew she had to write, and she was fortunate, as she so warmly and vividly explains, in her writing teachers—Allan Gurganus, Grace Paley, and Russell Banks—and in her success supporting herself by writing nonfiction for magazines and newspapers, beginning with Seventeen and extending to the New York Times Magazine, GQ, Vogue, and Gourmet. Patchett now assembles a retrospective set of 22 sterling personal essays to form an episodic, piquant, instructive, and entertaining self-portrait. She reflects on her family, life on a Tennessee farm, literary discipline and inspiration, and her failed first marriage. Her second marriage is central to her hilarious account of an RV road trip, and the full measure of Patchett’s toughness and daring surfaces in “The Wall,” a riveting account of her father, a captain when he retired after 30 years on the Los Angeles police force, coaching her as she takes the grueling admission test for the Los Angeles Police Academy. A self-described “workhorse” who has even opened an independent bookstore, Patchett is a commanding and incisive storyteller, whether her tales are true or imagined. --Donna Seaman

Review

“I had been so engaged by Ann Patchett’s multifaceted story, so lured in by her confiding voice, that I forgot I was on the job. […] As the best personal essays often do, Patchett’s is a two-way mirror, reflecting both the author and her readers.” (New York Times Book Review)

“Patchett’s mastery of nonfiction [is] every bit the equal of her skill as a novelist.” (Shelf Awareness)

“All the essays were a joy to read...No matter your interest, you’ll find words in this book that speak to you.” (Real Simple)

“Each of the essays is its own delight and resonates with warmth and humor… If read straight through, the book presents a lovely and lyrical look at a life well lived.” (Library Journal)

“Readable and candid, Patchett’s collection is a joyful celebration of life, love and the written word.” (Kirkus Reviews)

“Reading Patchett is like spending time with a deeply perceptive longtime pal, or a new friend that one instantly connects with.” (USA Today)

“[A] sparkling collection.” (The New Yorker)

“Happy marriage, compelling writing and all worthy endeavor requires hard work. That’s Patchett’s strength. And she does a fine job.” (Miami Herald)

“Patchett … is one of our best contemporary novelists. This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage reminds us that she is an exceptional writer of nonfiction, too. Her prose is a pleasure to read, regardless of genre.” (Dallas Morning News)

“Novelist Ann Patchett’s excellent essay collection ranges from dogs to writing to white-knuckled air travel.” (Christian Science Monitor)

Product details

  • File Size: 647 KB
  • Print Length: 319 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; Reprint edition (November 5, 2013)
  • Publication Date: November 5, 2013
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00BATKV2M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #48,137 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5
580 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on November 14, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on July 5, 2019
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Reviewed in the United States on February 2, 2014
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Reviewed in the United States on July 29, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on October 17, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on March 4, 2020
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Reviewed in the United States on December 24, 2013
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Reviewed in the United States on January 19, 2020
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Top international reviews

Leonie
5.0 out of 5 stars and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Patchett writes about real life
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 13, 2017
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Louise Gillett
5.0 out of 5 stars Ann Patchett - a true inspiration
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 24, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars Patchett at her best
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 8, 2020
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Blossom Rayner
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely beautifully written, profound
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 16, 2014
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B. B. Shenton
5.0 out of 5 stars Ann Pratchett is an award-winning writer of world class fame ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 27, 2016
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Tim Stone,Templehouse
3.0 out of 5 stars Biographical
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 18, 2019
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Scallywag
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting well put together. Ann's route to her ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 23, 2017
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Jane Wilson
5.0 out of 5 stars I particularly like her description of the trip in the RV
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 6, 2016
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MrsBroadie
5.0 out of 5 stars Great essays!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 22, 2017
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J. Amos
5.0 out of 5 stars A good read!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 14, 2015
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Jessica Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favourite books of all time
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 12, 2019
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birute
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 21, 2015
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Alison
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb collection of articles and essays
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 30, 2014
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SUSAN M BROWN
4.0 out of 5 stars Perceptine writing
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 12, 2014
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Paola
3.0 out of 5 stars short stories
Reviewed in Italy on October 25, 2019
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