Ambivalence, a Love Story: Portrait of a Marriage (Hardcover)

Portrait of a Marriage

By John Donatich

St. Martin's Press, 9780312326531, 240pp.

Publication Date: December 9, 2004



Ambivalence, a Love Story is a deeply nuanced accounting in which two people come together to make a marriage work. Rarely has marriage and its compromises been so intimately portrayed, especially when tested by depression, unemployment, miscarriage and other realities of contemporary life. Whether inside the sterile out-placement offices for reengineered executives or traipsing through the suburban homes and competing lifestyles with perky realtors, Donatich muses on life's transitions with rare candor and insight.

Ambivalence traces the inner life of a man coming into adulthood: on being first generation, on interfaith marriage, on playing the accordion and ultimately on the question of whether we are better off solitary or coupled. But at heart, it is a tender -- if circumspect -- love story. An astonishing middle-aged debut.

About the Author

John Donatich is currently Director of Yale University Press. His work has appeared in "The Atlantic Monthly," "Harper's," "The Nation," "The Village Voice" and other publications. He lives in New Haven, CT with his wife, Betsy Lerner and their daughter, Raffaella.

Praise For Ambivalence, a Love Story: Portrait of a Marriage

"A poignant self-portrait of what we rightly call 'a family man'. At certain eloquent moments it carried me inexorably to my own experience, and provided illumination. By touching so sensitively on the communal, it consoles in a finer tone."
- Harold Bloom

"Both in its general assertions and particular instance, this is a riveting book. And an original one. John Donatich admits to and explores the many aspects of Ambivalence, and he does so with intelligence and wit."
- Nicholas Delbanco

"There is no ambivalence in my response to this radiant work of story-telling. Its beauty of expression and familiarity of emotion and experience are John Donatich's gift to his readers, who just may recognize bits of themselves between its beautifully crafted lines."
- Sherwin Nuland