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Two young people in not quite equal love with each other, marry, amid doubt on the part of friends and family.
William Dean Howells finely relates the day by day dissolution of their marriage. Recurring disagreements alternate with temporary reconciliations until the final break-up.
I enjoyed the flow and logic of the story, all the characters were engaging and behaved in character throughout. The various settings for the story gave it substance and color.
The reader's diction is a bit anglicized for this book, otherwise, her reading is very good. And in spite of a brief passage of poor sound quality, "A Modern Instance" gets all five stars.
The book itself is a good piece of 19th century American realism. The quality of the recording, however, is poor. The narrator has peculiar inflections that take some getting used to; even worse, the technical quality of the recording is poor -- every 45 minutes the quality of the recording alternately deteriorates and improves -- I suspect this comes from the original tape version of the narration. The book should be re-narrated, or at least the recording re-mastered.
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