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Book Review: CLOCK DANCE (Anne Tyler)

Clock Dance by Anne Tyler

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Clock Dance is a pleasant novel about a woman’s journey from childhood to adulthood written by the best-selling and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Anne Tyler. In this novel, you’ll find yourself relating to all chapters of Willa Drake’s life story –full of self-discovery, second chances and courage.


It is the story of Willa Drake set out when she’s just a ten-year-old schoolgirl.  She and her friend Sonya tries to sell candy bars in order to afford an orchestra trip in 1967. When she gets home after their selling adventure, she finds out about her mother’s sudden disappearance. Willa and her sister Elaine are forced to go to school on their own.

The story evolves through her life in ten years then twenty years after.  In 1977, while she’s in college she receives a marriage proposal from her boyfriend Derek. In 1997, she struggles to move on after the car accident that killed her husband Derek.

As a young widow trying to put her life back together Willa finds it difficult, especially after their son Sean moves out. Eventually, she decides to finish her degree that was put on hold because of her early marriage.

She’s actually living comfortably but idle in Tucson with current husband Peter in 2017. Until she receives a call from a stranger from Baltimore informing her daughter-in-law Denise has been shot and that she has a little granddaughter named Cheryl who needs someone to look after her while her mother is in the hospital.  Does Willa actually have a granddaughter? As far as Willa is concern, Sean never married Denise.  But she always yearns to be a grandmother and that moment she’s miraculously placed in a situation where she can look after a grandchild. Since she is bored in Arizona, she decides to go to Baltimore. Without further considerations, she flies across the country impulsively to look after the young family she’s never met.

So Willa walks into uncharted territory – a new “family” surrounded by eccentric relatives and neighbors. Her life takes unexpected turns and finds comfort in unexpected places.

Clock Dance is a pleasant novel about a woman’s journey from childhood to adulthood written by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author Anne Tyler. You’ll find yourself relating to all chapters of Willa Drake’s life story –full of self-discovery, second chances and courage.