Book Reflection


The Memory Keeper’s Daughter is a novel by Kim Edwards that tells the story of a father who, after the birth of his daughter with Down syndrome, gives her away to be raised in an institution. The novel explores themes of family, secrets, and betrayal.

The Memory Keeper’s Daughter was published in 2005 and became a bestseller. The novel has been translated into over thirty languages and was adapted into a film in 2009.

Kim Edwards is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and the author of two collections of short stories. She lives in Lexington, Kentucky.

A buddy suggested this book to me, but as a new mother, time is more valuable than weapons-grade plutonium, and wasting it on a book that was not worth such a precious resource is for me a high-risk endeavor. I decided to roll the dice and accept the loan of her book, promising to return it soon and in excellent condition because the look in her eyes when she handed it over made me realize how important books are to her. I had already fallen in love with the story by page five.

The story is beautifully written, with characters that stay with you long after you have finished reading. The novel tells the story of a father who, in the aftermath of a tragic accident, makes a split-second decision that will change the lives of his wife and children forever. The Memory Keeper’s Daughter is a tender and moving portrait of a family tested by tragedy and secrets, a novel about love, loss, redemption and hope.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a beautiful and moving story. Kim Edwards has done an amazing job of creating characters that you will instantly fall in love with and a story that will stay with you long after you have finished reading. The Memory Keeper’s Daughter is a novel that I will definitely be recommending to all of my friends.

On the night Norah Henry gives birth to twins, the air is thick with fat, swirling snowflakes. The storm, which has rarely been seen in Lexington, has forced the obstetrician to drive his car off the road and abandon Norah and her children in the hands of her orthopaedic surgeon husband David and his practice nurse, Caroline.

The night will change all of their lives forever. David, with Caroline’s help, delivers the babies safely but when Norah asks to see her son, David denies her request, claiming that the baby died shortly after birth. The truth is that the baby boy was born with a severe case of Down Syndrome and David, not knowing how to deal with it or how to tell his wife, gives the child away to Caroline without telling Norah. The little girl, Phoebe, grows up believing she is an only child.

The Memory Keeper’s Daughter is a beautifully written novel about love, family and secrets. Kim Edwards weaves a tale that is both heart-warming and heart-breaking, a story that will stay with you long after you have finished reading it.

Norah has complete confidence in her capable, strong, reliable husband. She’s never had reason to doubt him; he’s a guy that most women would only be able to dream of marrying. She could never have guessed that David would commit the ultimate betrayal: their kid is born a healthy, active boy, but their daughter has Down’s syndrome—imagined her heart, which was like the size of a plum and quite possibly faulty, and he considered the nursery with its smooth animals and single cradle.

It is only when his wife begins to descend into a debilitating grief, and their son to act out in destructive and angry ways, that David realises the consequences of his actions. The Memory Keeper’s Daughter is a novel about love, betrayal and lies, and the devastating effect that they can have on even the most well-intentioned of people. Edwards weaves a masterful tale of love, loss and redemption, which will stay with you long after you have turned the final page.

Norah is unaware that David has given their newborn daughter to Caroline, the nurse, a woman so soft, delicate, and compliant in her hidden unrequited love for Dr. Henry that she could never bring herself to question him. In a quiet conversation, David asks Caroline to deliver the kid right away to a facility more suitable for her needs and fragile, lovely, sweet Caroline is torn.

The little girl, born with Down syndrome, will not receive proper care at the facility; she is likely to be relegated to an attic room and left to languish, unloved and alone. The child’s mother is dead and her father wants nothing to do with her. Caroline decides in that moment that she will take the child home with her and raise her as her own. The baby girl grows into a beautiful young woman named Phoebe, but always feels the weight of Caroline’s love for her father and wonders about the family she was taken from so long ago.

The main characters are Caroline, David, Norah, Paul, and Phoebe. David has a significant role in the narrative and is hiding something from his wife that causes strain among their marriage. He was an orthopedic surgeon who had to deliver his own children. When Norah gave birth, he delivered both of the twin babies he had previously given away the baby girl with Down Syndrome. He grew up having a sister with down syndrome who caused him so much agony when she passed away. If it came to it, he’d try to prevent his wife from feeling any anguish.

The novel The Memory Keeper’s Daughter by Kim Edwards is a story about family, love, and lies. Themes in The Memory Keeper’s Daughter are betrayal, secrecy, parenthood, empathy, guilt, and grief. The title The Memory Keeper’s Daughter refers to the secret that David kept from his wife Caroline.

The family dynamic changes when David gives away their daughter with down syndrome to Paul. This event affects each character differently throughout the novel. Caroline Grimes is David and Norah’s first child. She is a happy and content baby until the night her sister is born. When Phoebe is born with down syndrome, Caroline becomes withdrawn and angry. As she grows older, Caroline becomes more like her father and less like her mother.

She is a talented photographer but has trouble letting people see her work. Caroline is also very independent and does not want to be dependent on anyone, especially her father. David Henry is the father of twins, Caroline and Phoebe. He is an orthopedic surgeon and delivers his own children. When Phoebe is born with down syndrome, David makes the decision to give her away to Paul, a nurse from the hospital.

This decision haunts him for the rest of his life. David is a good man but he has a difficult time showing his emotions. He loves his wife and daughters but has trouble expressing his love for them. Norah Henry is the mother of twins, Caroline and Phoebe. She is a stay-at-home mother and is very close to her husband, David. When Phoebe is born with down syndrome, Norah is devastated. She wants to keep her daughter but she knows that David will never allow it.

As the novel progresses, we see how much Norah has sacrificed for her family. Paul Granger is a nurse at the hospital where David works. He is also the adoptive father of Phoebe Henry. Paul is a good man who loves his daughter very much. He does not tell Phoebe about her real parents because he knows that it would hurt her. However, when Caroline comes looking for her sister, Paul has no choice but to tell the truth.


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