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The Widows of Eastwick : A Novel

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In this delightfully ominous sequel to "The Witches of Eastwick," Alexandra, Jane, and Sukie are now widowed and have returned to the old Rhode Island seaside town where they must cope with the lingering traces of their evil deeds.

Customer Review Snapshot

2.9 out of 5 stars
19 total reviews
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Most helpful positive review
Having read the Witches of Eastwick back when it came out, my memory of the previous events was a bit dim as I read this book. Nonetheless, I found the struggle to deal with the reality of aging, which no magic, apparently, can quell, fascinating and perhaps, more truly horrifying than any of the supernatural events previously enacted. One can sense Updike's own impending death stirring through the meditations on change and time and what legacy one leaves.

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In this delightfully ominous sequel to "The Witches of Eastwick," Alexandra, Jane, and Sukie are now widowed and have returned to the old Rhode Island seaside town where they must cope with the lingering traces of their evil deeds. More than three decades after the events described in The Witches of Eastwick, Alexandra, Jane, and Sukie—widowed, aging, and with their occult powers fading—return for the summer to the Rhode Island town where they once made piquant scandal and sometimes deadly mischief. But what was then a center of license and liberation is now a “haven of wholesomeness” populated by hockey moms and househusbands primly rebelling against their absent, reckless, self-involved parents. With spirits still free but energy waning, the three women reconstitute their coven to confront not only this youthful counterspell of propriety but also the enmity of those longtime townsfolk who, through their youthful witchery, they irreparably harmed. In this wise and wicked satire on the way we make peace with our pasts, John Updike proves himself a wizard on every page.

Specifications

Series Title
Eastwick
Publisher
Random House Publishing Group
Book Format
Paperback
Original Languages
English
Number of Pages
320
Author
John Updike
ISBN-13
9780345506979
Publication Date
June, 2009
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H)
8.10 x 5.40 x 0.65 Inches
ISBN-10
0345506979

Customer Reviews

5 stars
0
4 stars
4
3 stars
10
2 stars
4
1 star
1
Most helpful positive review
Having read the Witche...
Having read the Witches of Eastwick back when it came out, my memory of the previous events was a bit dim as I read this book. Nonetheless, I found the struggle to deal with the reality of aging, which no magic, apparently, can quell, fascinating and perhaps, more truly horrifying than any of the supernatural events previously enacted. One can sense Updike's own impending death stirring through the meditations on change and time and what legacy one leaves.
Most helpful negative review
1 customers found this helpful
Um, not so much. Much...
Um, not so much. Much more graphic sexually than the original, not as interesting and really just blah. Updike's last novel and certainly not his best (although what do I know, having only read this one and the Witches of Eastwick?). Every once in a while, his descriptions caught me up short but for the most part, I was reading for plot, in a hurry to get it over with and find out what happened to the three friends. If not for the plane ride, I still wouldn't be done with it.
Most helpful positive review
Having read the Witche...
Having read the Witches of Eastwick back when it came out, my memory of the previous events was a bit dim as I read this book. Nonetheless, I found the struggle to deal with the reality of aging, which no magic, apparently, can quell, fascinating and perhaps, more truly horrifying than any of the supernatural events previously enacted. One can sense Updike's own impending death stirring through the meditations on change and time and what legacy one leaves.
Most helpful negative review
1 customers found this helpful
Um, not so much. Much...
Um, not so much. Much more graphic sexually than the original, not as interesting and really just blah. Updike's last novel and certainly not his best (although what do I know, having only read this one and the Witches of Eastwick?). Every once in a while, his descriptions caught me up short but for the most part, I was reading for plot, in a hurry to get it over with and find out what happened to the three friends. If not for the plane ride, I still wouldn't be done with it.
1-5 of 19 reviews

Throughout this book, ...

Throughout this book, Updike appears to be confronting his own mortality. It is, in fact, more than anything else, a meditation on aging and the ending of life and it is interesting that Updike chose to revisit his "witches" and provide readers with a woman's perspective of this poignant, and sometimes bitter, closure. As the book opens, all three of the witches have become widows. They are alone, each one uniquely confronting the fear and solitude of life's closing. During the early part of the book, they travel together, becoming reacquainted with one another. Updike's commentary on the frustrations and disappointments often associated with travel are sometimes entertaining but, frankly, often seem irrelevant. Ultimately, the witches return to Eastwick and find it, like all else in life, changed in a way that leaves them isolated, out of touch and largely ignored. Updike's writing is so very fine that it is easy to lose sight of the fact that this is far from his best work. Even so, it is, in my opinion, worth reading. He was a remarkable writer.

Having read the Witche...

Having read the Witches of Eastwick back when it came out, my memory of the previous events was a bit dim as I read this book. Nonetheless, I found the struggle to deal with the reality of aging, which no magic, apparently, can quell, fascinating and perhaps, more truly horrifying than any of the supernatural events previously enacted. One can sense Updike's own impending death stirring through the meditations on change and time and what legacy one leaves.

Having read the Witche...

Having read the Witches of Eastwick back when it came out, my memory of the previous events was a bit dim as I read this book. Nonetheless, I found the struggle to deal with the reality of aging, which no magic, apparently, can quell, fascinating and perhaps, more truly horrifying than any of the supernatural events previously enacted. One can sense Updike's own impending death stirring through the meditations on change and time and what legacy one leaves.

I read this because of...

I read this because of the movie version of the WITCHES OF EASTWICK. At first I found it difficult to put the aging ladies together with what I remember of the movie. This book has made it to a few "must read" lists. Depsite that, I cannot rave about the story, because I felt the first third of the book read somewhat like a travelogue. However, I did enjoy the relationship between these three best friends some 30 years down the road, when they reunite and revisit Eastwick.

It took me a while to ...

It took me a while to get through this book. I had read "The Witches of Eastwick" some time back but didn't do a LibraryThing review of that book. I liked it just okay and, sorry to say, certainly liked "The Widows of Eastwick" less. One of Updike's last works, and possibly because he was facing aging himself, this novel depicts the witches (Jane, Sukie, and Alexandra) in an unflattering manner regarding women of a certain age -- such as when he describes their private parts as being "smelly". They have aged at the same pace as the earlier Eastwick novel, in that they're thirty-some years older and are now widows. Additionally, this book veered from lengthy a travelogue-like section at the beginning in which each woman is visiting a different country. Then they reunite and some odd things happen that are just really odd. I skimmed over a too-long section regarding quantum physics (I think that it was about?) that I'm not sure how it was supposed to relate to witchcraft. Great way with words, as is usual with Updike, but this book didn't gel together (at least for me), and seemed to wrap up quite abruptly.

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Electrode, Comp-283796748, DC-prod-dfw5, ENV-prod-a, PROF-PROD, VER-30.0.3, SHA-fe0221a6ef49da0ab2505dfeca6fe7a05293b900, CID-eb2366a3-c5d-16e77460ec86c2, Generated: Sun, 17 Nov 2019 02:51:50 GMT