Hours, The (2002) - Synopsis
Published in 1998, Michael Cunningham's The Hours was hailed as a literary accomplishment of major importance. It received the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the PEN/Faulkner Award, and was chosen as Best Book of 1998 by The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune and Publishers Weekly.
Jameson Currier in the Washington Post Book World writes that Cunningham has "deftly created something original, a trio of richly-interwoven tales that alternate with one another chapter by chapter…his most mature and masterful work. "
"Cunningham here undertakes one of the most daunting literary projects imaginable," states the review in the Yale Book Review. "Cunningham's portrait of Woolf is heartbreaking. With The Hours, Cunningham has done the impossible: he has taken a canonical work of literature and, in reworking it, has made it his own. "
Eerily depicting how three women from three different time periods are brought together by a masterful piece of literature, "The Hours" tells the story of three very different individuals who share in common the feeling that they have been living their lives for someone else.
Virginia Woolf, in a suburb of London in the early 1920s, is struggling to begin Mrs. Dalloway, and to overcome the mental illness that threatens to engulf her. Laura Brown, a young wife and mother in post-World War II Los Angeles, is just starting to read Mrs. Dalloway, and is so deeply affected by it that she begins to question the very life she has chosen for herself. Clarissa Vaughan, living in contemporary New York City, becomes a modern-day mirror image of Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway as she plans what may be the final party for her friend and former lover, Richard.
An intermingling of three stories about three women searching for meaning in their lives, "The Hours" brings to life Virginia Woolf's heartfelt belief that all lives are intertwined.
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