Mary-Beth's Reviews > The Ten-Year Nap

The Ten-Year Nap by Meg Wolitzer
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Mar 18, 11

Read in June, 2010

Lots of telling, not a lot of showing

Balancing a high-powered career and motherhood is a difficult proposition, one that the four main characters in this book decided to opt out of, for various reasons, when their children were born. Now, ten years later, living in and around NYC, they are mostly sunk in middle-age malaise. They're not as involved in their children's lives as they used to be, and not really interested in going back to work, and overall dissatisfied. The novel aspires to be a sort of "Feminine Mystique" for the modern-era woman, but falls short of that mark. Part of this is because there's a lot of telling (lots and lots of explanatory prose), without a lot of showing (minimal dialogue and character development). Also, the characters are pretty one-dimensional (especially the fourth of the four main characters, Karen, who appears to have been added on as an afterthought to bring some Asian-American diversity in the predominantly white world of the book).

Nonetheless, the novel is a quick read, and brings up some interesting issues.
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