The Widower's Tale Percy Darling, 70, is the titular widower, a rigid man still sorely missing his long-deceased wife. He holds the center of Glass' tremendously engaging fourth… The Widower's Tale Percy Darling, 70, is the titular widower, a rigid man still sorely missing his long-deceased wife. He holds the center of Glass' tremendously engaging fourth… Fiction Pantheon
Book Review

The Widower's Tale

The Widower's Tale by Julia Glass
The Widower's Tale by Julia Glass
EW's GRADE
A-

Details Writer: Julia Glass; Genre: Fiction; Publisher: Pantheon

Percy Darling, 70, is the titular widower, a rigid man still sorely missing his long-deceased wife. He holds the center of Glass' tremendously engaging fourth novel, The Widower's Tale, set in a bucolic town outside of Boston. Orbiting around Percy are two grown daughters: one a divorced flibbertigibbet and the other a renowned oncologist who is as stern with her family as she is open and available to her patients. Add to the mix a wayward Harvard grandson, a Guatemalan gardener, a gay preschool teacher, and a salt-of-the-earth artist who reminds Percy that he is still very much alive. It's a large, endearing cast, bursting with emotional and social issues, and Glass slips effortlessly between their individual and enmeshed dramas. As she well proved in her National Book Award-winning Three Junes, Glass crafts dense and absorbing reads that are as charming as they are provocative. A–

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Originally posted Aug 25, 2010 Published in issue #1118 Sep 03, 2010 Order article reprints