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The Ninth Hour


A crowning achievement of one of the finest American writers at work today.
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Discuss The Ninth Hour by Alice McDermott:
How does Annie choose to remember her husband, Jim? How is his daughter, Sally, like him? Do you relate to the grandchildren's response when they finally learn the truth about his death?

Created: 09/01/18

Replies: 3

Posted Sep. 01, 2018 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1584

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How does Annie choose to remember her husband, Jim? How is his daughter, Sally, like him? Do you relate to the grandchildren's response when they finally learn the truth about his death?

How does Annie choose to remember her husband, Jim? How is his daughter, Sally, like him? Do you relate to the grandchildren's response when they finally learn the truth about his death?


Posted Sep. 06, 2018 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
susiej

Join Date: 10/15/14

Posts: 162

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RE: How does Annie choose to remember her husband, Jim? How is his daughter, Sally, like him? Do you relate to the grandchildren's response when they finally learn the truth about his death?

Annie does not talk about Jim above ground - or shall we say by light of day. In the convent laundry, however, Sister Illuminata talks often about her mother - long since gone - and in doing so perhaps gives Annie license to recall and relive her life with Jim before his suicide. She talks about him almost as if he is not gone. I have to come back to this at a later time.


Posted Sep. 12, 2018 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jww

Join Date: 05/31/11

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RE: How does Annie choose to remember her husband, Jim? How is his daughter, Sally, like him? Do you relate to the grandchildren's response when they finally learn the truth about his death?

Annie chooses to remember her husband with love. I don't believe guilt plays a big part in her life. She has a child to raise and will do what is necessary to accomplish that. Sally has inherited his depression and his 'romanticism' - his outlook on life. The truth of Jim's death was not a particular shock to the grandchildren. They were fairly modern in their approach to life and took the news in stride. Just one more family fact.


Posted Sep. 14, 2018 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
reene

Join Date: 02/18/15

Posts: 311

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RE: How does Annie choose to remember her husband, Jim? How is his daughter, Sally, like him? Do you relate to the grandchildren's response when they finally learn the truth about his death?

Annie does not often speak of Jim. Occasionally with Sister Illuminata she will recall some memory of Jim, but never in reference to his death. When Sally shows a particular trait, Annie will say she inherited that from Jim. Sally really knows very little about her father and has pretty much accepted that. When the grandchildren learn the truth about his death, there isn't much of a reaction. They have been raised on secrets most of their lives, so this isn't a great surprise.


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