Book Review | The Obituary Writer by Ann Hood

book cover The Obituary Writer by Ann HoodShifting focus between a single woman in post-1906 earthquake San Francisco/Napa and a married woman in DC at the time of JFK’s inauguration (1961), The Obituary Writer is an interesting blend of historical, literary and women’s fiction. Hood captures details from the various places and time periods that catch you by surprise and inspire a greater understanding of bygone times.

Each woman has her own story and characters. Claire, the DC wife, is wrapped up in a world of housework and childcare while her social life involves neighborhood women and volunteering for the campaign. She begins having an affair and is forced to question her marriage and societal norms of the time. The other woman, Vivien, is dealing with the loss of her lover who disappeared during the earthquake. While she helps others deal with their grief by writing obituaries, she is unable to progress with her own life. She lives in Napa near her childhood best friend Lotte who has begun her own family and has a successful husband running their vineyard. As the stories unfold, both women progress toward a catalyst – which is all I am going to say. This was an enjoyable and educational read. Check it out from a library near you.

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About amy de simone
Amy is an active volunteer, traveler and photographer. She is interested in art, libraries, museums and nonprofits. She holds an M.A. in Library & Information Studies and a B.A. in Italian Language & Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

2 Responses to Book Review | The Obituary Writer by Ann Hood

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