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Her Husband: Hughes and Plath, A Marriage | [Diane Middlebrook]

Her Husband: Hughes and Plath, A Marriage

Ted Hughes married Sylvia Plath in 1956, at the outset of their brilliant careers. Plath's suicide six-and-a-half years later, for which many held Hughes accountable, changed his life, his closest relationships, his standing in the literary world, and brought new significance to his poetry.
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Publisher's Summary

Ted Hughes married Sylvia Plath in 1956, at the outset of their brilliant careers. Plath's suicide six-and-a-half years later, for which many held Hughes accountable, changed his life, his closest relationships, his standing in the literary world, and brought new significance to his poetry.

Middlebrook presents a portrait of Hughes as a man, as a poet, and as a husband haunted, and nourished, his entire life by the aftermath of his first marriage. How marriages fail and how men fail in marriages is one of the book's central themes.

©2003 Diane Middlebrook; (P)2003 Blackstone Audiobooks

What the Critics Say

"Middlebrook's [book] is sure to be the gold standard. Astutely reasoned, fluidly written, and developed with psychological acuity, the work is a sympathetically balanced assessment of two lives that flamed brightly with the incandescent fire of creative genius." (Publishers Weekly)
"The most balanced, most literary and interpretatively astute, and best-written analysis yet of the saga of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes." (Booklist)
"Sympathetic but resolutely unsentimental....intelligent, sensitive, at times harrowing." (Joyce Carol Oates, Washington Post Book World)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (38 )
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4.8 (9 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Bernadette USA 12-02-04
    Bernadette USA 12-02-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    33
    4
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    "engaging"

    absorbing analysis of the Plath/Hughes relationship. even a casual Plath fan will be pleased. well done.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rhiannon Johannesburg, N/A, South Africa 04-06-04
    Rhiannon Johannesburg, N/A, South Africa 04-06-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    1
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    "Tragedy is a good formula."

    This is a good book, well-presented and structured in general and with occasional flashes of true insight into this tragic story. My criticisms are minimal: In terms of the audio format one is the mispronunciation of French words by the narrator which I felt was easily avoidable and therefore inexcusable. Another the fact that the chapters seem to be made up of titled paragraphs. The narrator reads these titles immediately after the end of the previous paragraph with a long pause after the title instead of a short pause on either side. This can be somewhat disconcerting. In terms of the writing itself: Middlebrook has chosen to present an analytical account in more or less choronolgical order, with frequent references to previous and future events that are relevant. This makes the book a little jumpy and disjointed and results in a sometimes repetitive narrative. While it is possible to skip re-used passages when reading one is forced to suffer through them when listening. Also, the author would do well to educate herself on the difference between England and Great Britain; Ted Hughes was the Poet Laureate of the latter and not the former. Aside from a certain coldness to the intensely human story she is telling, Middlebrook does a superb job. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the Plath and Hughes drama; though I do not know how satisfying brief quotes in the text would be to someone who had not read Plath's journals and poetry already. The story itself cannot be anything but fascinating.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cushla New PlymouthNew Zealand 01-05-07
    Cushla New PlymouthNew Zealand 01-05-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An interesting listen"

    This is a really interesting biography. If you're into Plath then this is a great listen. A little on the long side, but it does go into depth about the relationship between Hughes and Plath without a great deal of bias. This book shares a side of Plath not seen in other bios. Recommended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol Prague, Czech Republic 06-04-12
    Carol Prague, Czech Republic 06-04-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    3
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    "Fascinating lives of two entwined poets"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Her Husband to be better than the print version?

    After listening to the audio I would enjoy the print version as well


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Her Husband?

    The poetry of Sylvia Plath


    Have you listened to any of Bernadette Dunne’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No but would definitely like to hear more


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The sadness of Plath


    Any additional comments?

    After listening to this I want to read more of their poetry.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Suzanne S. Shaw Stanford 05-07-11
    Suzanne S. Shaw Stanford 05-07-11 Member Since 2009

    Silivali Suz

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
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    Overall
    "Brilliant research and poignant writing"

    Diane was my English teacher at Stanford. A relentlessly inspiring woman for whom I feel a tremendous debt of gratitude to have been coached by her... and now, to read how cleverly and profoundly she unveils the multifaceted relationship between Plath & Hughes. As an audible book can be ruined by a "not quite right" voice-over reader, this one is very, very good...and easy on the ear. go for it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deborah New York, NY, USA 11-07-06
    Deborah New York, NY, USA 11-07-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "INTERESTING"

    This was an interesting listen if you are a Sylvia Plath fan and can't get enough of her. I am a fan and I enjoyed it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-6 of 6 results
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  • Mary
    CarlowIreland
    2/16/10
    Overall
    "Wonderful"

    This book is a treasure of information about both Plath and Hughes and their famous marriage but it is also a wonderful book to help understand their poetry even more, the backgrounds behind the poems is explained very well and it is a very balanced account of both of their lives, which can be difficult to find with so many anti-Hughes books out there!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-1 of 1 results

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