The Woman Upstairs
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Told with urgency, intimacy, and piercing emotion, this New York Times bestselling novel is the riveting confession of a woman awakened, transformed, and abandoned by a desire for a world beyond her own.
Nora Eldridge is a reliable, but unremarkable, friend and neighbor, always on the fringe of other people’s achievements. But the arrival of the Shahid family—dashing Skandar, a Lebanese scholar, glamorous Sirena, an Italian artist, and their son, Reza—draws her into a complex and exciting new world. Nora’s happiness pushes her beyond her boundaries, until Sirena’s careless ambition leads to a shattering betrayal.
A New York Times Book Review Notable Book • A Washington Post Top Ten Book of the Year • A Chicago Tribune Noteworthy Book • A Huffington Post Best Book • A Boston GlobeBest Book of the Year • A Kirkus Best Fiction Book • A Goodreads Best Book
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly
This acclaimed novel has generated a great deal of buzz this month, including an appearance by Ms. Messud on NPR. Though I enjoyed her prose and some clever passages, the impact of the novel does not occur until the last few pages. The twist generated some interesting thought afterwards, but felt predictable. It's an interesting novel, but reading it once was enough for me.
The story is an interesting fit for a short novel with a twist. The author however did not explore the action to sustain the rich inner life of her heroine out of just few facts described in the book. the result is that The inner thoughts of the main character are redundant and do not leave much to the reader's imagination. Two thirds into the book she becomes flat, one dimensional. It is a sad and boring story. Reading it is like siting down for coffee with a good friend who always complains about her life and never once ask you about yours. You read it politely to not offend the main character whose life is really full but she is in clinical depression and refuses to get treatment.
This book, while extremely well written, tells a story that is just plain depressing about a woman who is ultimately betrayed and with no satisfactory sense of justice that occurs. It has been hyped and is overrated in my opinion.