Keeping the House (Paperback)

Today: $12.17
Out of Stock

Club O Gold Members Earn

$0.61 | 5% Rewards*

Rewards

GOLD

$19.95/yr.

5% Rewards

Earn even faster

Free Shipping

Never pay extra*

Exclusive Rewards

Save big-- up to 40%

Exclusive Offers

Straight to your inbox

5% Dining Rewards

Get paid to go out tonight

ITEM# 10944406
    Notify me when it is back in stock!

    Enter your email address, we will notify you if it comes back in stock.

Love this item?

Save it to a list so you can find it anytime!


Oops,

something went wrong.

Please refresh the page and try again.


Details

ITEM#: 10944406

Ellen Baker was born in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, and grew up in Wisconsin and Illinois. She earned a masters degree in American studies from the University of Minnesota, worked as curator of a World War II museum, and is currently a bookseller and event coordinator at an independent bookstore. She lives with her husband in Wisconsin.


From the Hardcover edition.
Set in the conformist 1950s and reaching back to span two world wars, Ellen Baker’s superb novel is the story of a newlywed who falls in love with a grand abandoned house and begins to unravel dark secrets woven through the generations of a family. Like Whitney Otto’s How to Make an American Quilt in its intimate portrayal of women’s lives, and reminiscent of novels by Elizabeth Berg and Anne Tyler, Keeping the House is a rich tapestry of a novel that introduces a wonderful new fiction writer.

When Dolly Magnuson moves to Pine Rapids, Wisconsin, in 1950, she discovers all too soon that making marriage work is harder than it looks in the pages of the Ladies’ Home Journal. Dolly tries to adapt to her new life by keeping the house, supporting her husband’s career, and fretting about dinner menus. She even gives up her dream of flying an airplane, trying instead to fit in at the stuffy Ladies Aid quilting circle. Soon, though, her loneliness and restless imagination are seized by the vacant house on the hill. As Dolly’s life and marriage become increasingly difficult, she begins to lose herself in piecing together the story of three generations of Mickelson men and women: Wilma Mickelson, who came to Pine Rapids as a new bride in 1896 and fell in love with a man who was not her husband; her oldest son, Jack, who fought as a Marine in the trenches of World War I; and Jack’s son, JJ, a troubled veteran of World War II, who returns home to discover Dolly in his grandparents’ house.

As the crisis in Dolly’s marriage escalates, she not only escapes into JJ’s stories of his family’s past but finds in them parallels to her own life. As Keeping the House moves back and forth in time, it eloquently explores themes of wartime heroism and passionate love, of the struggles of men’s struggles with fatherhood and war and of women’s conflicts with issues of conformity, identity, forbidden dreams, and love.

Beautifully written and atmospheric, Keeping the House illuminates the courage it takes to shape and reshape a life, and the difficulty of ever knowing the truth about another person’s desires. Keeping the House is an unforgettable novel about small-town life and big matters of the heart.

Advance praise for Keeping the House
“Ellen Baker’s first novel is a wonder! Keeping the House is a great big juicy family saga, a romantic page-turner with genuine characters written with a perfect sense of history, time, and place. Her portrayal of the American housewife is hilarious and heartbreaking. I couldn’t have liked it more!”
–Fannie Flagg, author of Can’t Wait to Get to Heaven

“Ellen Baker’s first novel, Keeping the House, is a quilt that grids a small Midwestern town in the middle of the last century. Under this writer’s deft hands, each square is a story, a mystery, an indiscretion, a tale of the great house and grand family who once ruled there. Even more, it captures the roles of women then: both the living embodiments of demure ideals, and those who couldn’t fit the pattern. Edith Wharton’s novels of domestic despair and display come to mind with each page.”
–Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of The Deep End of the Ocean

“A born storyteller, Ellen Baker has written an enthralling family saga filled with three generations of memorable characters and capturing the dreams and frustrations of twentieth-century women in wonderful, spot-on historical detail.”
–Faith Sullivan, author of Gardenias and The Cape Ann

Specs

ISBN 9780812977844
Genre FICTION / Sagas
Format Paperback
Pages 543
Publisher Date 2008-07-08 00:00:00.0
Publisher Random House Inc
Copyright Year 2007
Height 8.5 in
Wdth 5.5 in
Thickness 1.25 in
Unit weight 0.95 lb
Language English
Edition Detail Reprint
Audience General/trade
Authors Baker, Ellen
Dimensions 9.0x6.0x1.0
Country of Origin United States

Questions & Answers

Yay! Be the first to ask a question about this product.

Shopping Tips & Inspiration

Shipping & Returns

Contact Information
This product is not yet released, and is expected to ship on Jul. 15, 2008.

This date is subject to change. In order to assure you receive Overstock.com's low price on this item, your credit card will be charged upon order placement. The item will ship immediately upon release.

Standard Return Policy:

Items must be returned in new or unused condition and contain all original materials included with the shipment. More Details

FINAL SALE EXCLUSION: Items marked as FINAL SALE are not returnable unless the problem you experience is the result of our error.

For your protection, all orders are screened for security purposes. If your order is selected for review, our Loss Prevention Team may contact you by phone or email. There may be a two business day delay to process your order.

** Most Oversize orders are delivered within 1-4 weeks. Some orders may take 6 weeks to be delivered.

Advertisement