The Story of a Marrage

The Story of a Marriage

by Andrew Sean Greer

Arlene Almas: Pearlie and Holland Cook, an African-American couple, meet as teenagers growing up in Kentucky and marry after World War II in San Francisco, although Holland's twin aunts warn Pearlie not to marry him. They buy a house and have a son named Walter (they call him Sonny). It doesn't turn out to be the 1950's American dream, though - for one thing, Sonny has polio and must wear leg braces, but he is a happy child whose parents adore him. The other twist in the story arrives in the sudden appearance of Buzz Drumer, whom Holland knows from his time in the service. The rest of the novel can't be revealed without ruining the narrative for prospective readers, but I will say that Pearlie is a strong, perceptive woman who can adapt to and survive some very unsettling experiences.
Rating: ***

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