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When Erik Davidsen and his sister, Inga, find a disturbing note among their late father's papers, they believe he may be implicated in a mysterious death. Siri Hustvedt's The Sorrows of an American tells the story of the Davidsen family as brother and sister unbandage its wounds in the year following their father's funeral. Erik is a psychiatrist dangerously vulnerable to his patients; Inga is a writer whose late husband, a famous novelist, seems to have concealed a secret life. Interwoven with each new mystery in their lives are discoveries about their father's youth--poverty, the War, the Depression--that bring new implications to his relationship with his children.
This masterful novel reveals one family's hidden sorrows in an "elegant meditation on familial grief, memory, and imagination" (Minneapolis Star-Tribune).
My sister called it "the year of secrets," but when I look back on it now, I've come to understand that it was a time not of what was there, but of what wasn't. A patient of mine once said, "There are ghosts walking around inside me, but they don't...