The Longings of Women

The Longings of Women

A Novel

Book - 1994
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Random House, Inc.
"Every new novel by Marge Piercy is cause for celebration. THE LONGINGS OF WOMEN is a rich tapestsry filled with passion and rage and real love, a book that gets under your skin and stays with you long after the last page has been turned."

ALICE HOFFMAN

Leila Landsman, an academic, is married to a philandering theatre director. An expert on abused women, she begins to investigate the notorious case of Becky Burgess and her teenage lover, who are accused of murdering her husband. As Leila is drawn into Becky's life story of ambition and need, she also meets Mary Burke, a respectable cleaning lady who has no place to live. As all three lives intertwine, and their dramas unfold, Marge Piercy probes their minds and hearts, sharing the frustration, rage, determination and joy that thread through every women's life.

Baker & Taylor
The lives of three women--Leila, married to an unfaithful husband; Becky, determined to escape the poverty in which she was raised; and Mary, a cleaning woman whose everyday life is a struggle to survive--intersect at a moment of crisis

Blackwell North Amer
With The Longings of Women, Marge Piercy gives us her most involving, heartbreaking, and ultimately life-affirming novel yet. Through her three unforgettable female characters - women whom we recognize in ourselves, our friends, and our chance acquaintances - Piercy reveals a deep, often secret, part of a woman's life: the need for a place in the world that cannot be lost to the vagaries of relationships, work, or the economy.
Leila Landsman has long known that her theater-director husband has affairs with young actresses he casts. But it takes the death of her best and oldest friend for Leila to confront how little is left of her marriage. Adrift with this new knowledge, she decides to investigate a subject that, as an academic expert on abused women, she might consider too sensational: the notorious case of Becky Burgess and her teenage lover, who are accused of murdering her husband.
Becky Burgess grew up longing to escape the overcrowded, shabby house where her fisherman father and gentle mother raised seven children in undisguised poverty. She studies the women she sees on television: the way they speak, dress, act. She knows she's every bit as smart and pretty as they are. Once she makes the rest of the world notice, the rewards will come her way, rewards she will never, ever, willingly give up. A Becky Sharp of the malls, she seeks a way up and into the light of the media.
Mary Burke does well by her ladies. As a cleaning woman to the affluent of the Boston area, she never fails to be on time, meticulous, respectful. What none of her clients know, and must never guess, is that at sixty-one, Mary is homeless. Once she lived as they do, until her husband "traded her in" and her children made lives that don't include her.
To outward appearances so different, Leila, Becky, and Mary share the same longings: to be seen for who they are, to be valued, loved, but most of all, to have a physical and emotional home that can't be taken away. And as their dramas unfold, Marge Piercy probes their minds and hearts, sharing the frustration, rage, determination, and joy that thread through every woman's life. Leila, Becky, and Mary are a triumph - characters who keep us turning the pages, and linger in our minds long after their stories are told.

Baker
& Taylor

The lives of three women--Leila, married to an unfaithful husband; Becky, determined to escape the poverty in which she was raised; and Mary, a cleaning woman whose everyday life is a struggle to survive--intersect at a moment of crisis. 75,000 first printing. $40,000 ad/promo.

Publisher: New York : Fawcett Colombine, c1994.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780449909072
0449909077
Branch Call Number: PIE
Characteristics: 455 p. ; 24 cm.

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