The Senator's Wife
Miller offers another intriguing look into the female psyche with this tense, well-crafted novel. Young, beautiful Meri has just wed a successful professor, and the two live in part of a New England townhouse, which they share with the sophisticated Delia and her senator-husband. Each couple has a wing of the house, an arrangement that allows Meri and Delia to become friends and confidantes. When a surprise pregnancy throws Meri into a tailspin, she must take stock of her life, beginning with her disturbing childhood and ending with her new marriage. Delia, meanwhile, dutifully suffers the indiscretions of her husband, whose affairs have earned him a reputation as a womanizer. Their marriage exists solely as a means of furthering his political career. As Meri and Delia experience their own separate emotional hardships, the bond between them grows, and their lives soon overlap in unpredictableand damagingways. The book's taut, perfectly controlled plot features some surprises, and its evolution is complemented by the insight and intuition Miller brings to the book. Her uncanny ability to tap into the emotional interiors of women makes the narrative surprisingly potent. This study of two very different female characters whose private worlds unexpectedly intertwine reinforces Miller's reputation as one of our leading contemporary novelists.
A reading group guide is available in print and online at