Shannon's Reviews > A Lost Lady

A Lost Lady by Willa Cather
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's review
Oct 13, 2008

really liked it
Read in November, 2008

Based on the reviews that other people have written of this book, there seem to be a lot of different interpretations of what the story is fundamentally about. Here's mine: A Lost Lady is the story of a woman needing to be saved. At first she seems to be a romantic figure, but as time passes her pathetic situation becomes more apparent. She lacks something basic in her personality that would allow her to anchor herself, so instead she uses men as anchors. She has a deep passion for life, but no capability to maintain a life of her own.

She's a woman without a solid identity, even without her own name most of the time -- she's almost always referred to as Mrs. Forrester. The central character, Niel, suspects that her husband might know who she really is, but nobody else comes close.

Because Niel is an adolescent boy, he judges her harshly, becoming increasingly disgusted as he realizes that the projected force of her personality is an act. He desperately wants her to be more than she is, to embody all of the pleasant things about life. But he never comes close to understanding her.
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