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October 10, 2022

an open door by Anne Leigh Parrish ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

"He said he wished she didn't read so much.  He wasn't sure it was good for her." (p 16)  

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of historical fiction novel an open door by Anne Leigh Parrish
October 2022; Unsolicited Press; 978-1956692341
ebook, print (272 pages); historical fiction

an open door
is a strong character-driven novel that takes place in the 1950s.  The war is over and the soldiers have come home to start their lives and their families.  A grateful nation makes sure that they have job and educational opportunities even though they have to get rid of all of the female workers who kept the factories running during the war.  Plus most women were no longer accepted at colleges because men studying using the  GI bill took precedence over them.

Edith had known Walter for years and when he got back from the war, she was hard at work on her doctorate degree.  When he started law school, he ordered her to put her dreams on hold so that she could be the type of wife he needed - a wife who kept the house clean, food on the table, and was always available to plan dinner and drinks for friends.  She quit college and tried to do things his way.  It didn't take long for her to realize that she couldn't live her life as the person he wanted her to be so she moved to New York City with his rich aunt who believed that women should live like they wanted.  Edith returned to Walter after his letters begged her to come home.  Even though she goes back, she isn't sure that she can continue her life with him as a second-class citizen.  When she finds a bookstore for sale, she jumps at the chance to become the person she always wanted and needed to be to find fulfillment in her life.

This book is about the life of women in the 50s.  After having the freedom to pursue their dreams during the 40s, they find themselves in a male-dominated society where they exist as wives and mothers and not as free women.  This is a strong feminist book without being preachy.  After reading about Edith's life as a married woman it is easy to understand her internal conflict.  We only see her bloom again when she opens her bookstore and is able to follow her dream of who she wants to be.

Buy an open door at Amazon

Susan Roberts grew up in Michigan but loves the laid-back life at her home in the Piedmont area of North Carolina where she is two hours from the beach to the east and the mountains in the west.  She reads almost anything but her favorite genres are Southern Fiction and Historical Fiction.  You can connect with her on Facebook.

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