May 22, 2009

The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk KIdd

This book is by the same author as Secret Life of Bees, which I read last year but don't think I ever reviewed on here. I liked both books but didn't LOVE either of them. The stories were intriguing but not captivating. The one thing I loved about this book was how well the author captured the feelings of boredom and complacency in a woman's life. I don't know about everyone else, but I've had those feelings many times where I just feel like I'm made for more or I'm not doing enough, or what I really want to be doing. The difference is that I don't find myself by sleeping with a monk.

The Mermaid Chair is a story about Jessie Sullivan, a woman who is getting complacent with her place in her marriage. She used to be a great artist with promise and feels that marriage has packaged her into this neat little box she doesn't want to be in. So when her mother appears to go crazy, it's the perfect chance for Jessie to escape that marriage to go take care of her mother. And herself. In doing so, she meets a monk (well he's in training to be a monk) and surprise, they fall in love. The novel is about how she revives the spontaniety and enjoyment in life by taking chances and getting out of that little box.

The novel is about relationships. Relationships between a mother and daughter, husband and wife, lovers, and most importantly the relationship one has with themselves. I really enjoyed the way Sue Monk Kidd developed each of these relationships within the 300 pages. All of the relationships were developed fully allowing you insight into each of the characters' lives. The story itself was fairly believable and relatable, but the details within that story are great.

I recommend this to to anyone that likes books like Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. Or for anyone that is just looking for a good and interesting (but predictable) read about finding oneself.


  1. I read both books as well and completely agree on every point.

  2. I absolutely loved The Secret Life of Bees as was hesitant to read The Mermaid Chair, but now I might give it a try!


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