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I Married You for Happiness

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Throughout Lily Tuck’s career, she's been praised by critics for her crisp, lean language and sensuous explorations of exotic locales and complex psychologies. From Siam to Paraguay and beyond, Tuck inspires readers to travel into unfamiliar realms, and her newest novel is no exception. Slender, potent, and utterly engaging, I Married You For Happiness combines marriage, mathematics, and the probability of an afterlife to create Tuck's most affecting and riveting book yet.

“His hand is growing cold, still she holds it” is how this novel that tells the story of a marriage begins. The tale unfolds over a single night as Nina sits at the bedside of her husband, Philip, whose sudden and unexpected death is the reason for her lonely vigil. Still too shocked to grieve, she lets herself remember the defining moments of their long union, beginning with their meeting in Paris. She is an artist, he a highly accomplished mathematician—a collision of two different worlds that merged to form an intricate and passionate love. As we move through select memories—real and imagined—Tuck reveals the most private intimacies, dark secrets, and overwhelming joys that defined Nina and Philip's life together.

From Publishers Weekly

Jun 06, 2011 – A breathlessly mannered, affecting new work by National Book Award–winner Tuck (The News from Paraguay) tracks a Boston wife's random, reflective chain of thoughts as she sits at her dead husband's bedside. Philip, a senior mathematician at an MIT-sounding institution in Cambridge, Mass., goes into cardiac arrest as he naps before dinner. Nina, a painter, and his wife of 42 years, decides to spend the night alone with Philip's body in their Boston bedroom, drinking wine, and remembering. The couple met in the early 1960s in Paris; she worked at an art gallery and read Natalie Saurraute; he was a student, steeped in numbers, probability theory, and the uselessness of reason in trying to prove infinity, or that God exists—à la Pascal. Layered memories, somewhat pell-mell, build suspense: from Philip's honeymoon confession (never mentioned again) of the consequences of a drunk-driving accident in his youth, to Nina's secret abortion, the father indeterminate; and their only child, Louise, now in her 30s, harbors a troubling hostility toward her mother. In the end, the love Nina and Philip have for each other is unproven and unpredictable, except in these small, vital snapshots that make up two lives closely shared, and beautifully portrayed in this triumph of a novel.
I Married You for Happiness
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  • $13.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Literary
  • Published: Sep 06, 2011
  • Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
  • Seller: The Perseus Books Group, LLC
  • Print Length: 208 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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