Pride: A Novel

Pride: A Novel

4.3 3
by Lorene Cary

View All Available Formats & Editions

Four women, lifelong friends, are turning 40--and what a year it is.

Roz, the perfectly controlled (and controlling) politician's wife, is trying to keep her family together as she recovers from breast cancer and her husband runs for the biggest election of his career. Though he has strayed from her in the past, she has always been there for him--but


Four women, lifelong friends, are turning 40--and what a year it is.

Roz, the perfectly controlled (and controlling) politician's wife, is trying to keep her family together as she recovers from breast cancer and her husband runs for the biggest election of his career. Though he has strayed from her in the past, she has always been there for him--but all that is in jeopardy now that she has learned he has been sleeping with one of her three best friends.

Tam has been avoiding commitment all her life, both in an academic career that shows no sign of becoming permanent, and in her sexually combustive affairs with men. But she's ready to make some radical departures--including trying to return the interest of a sexy hunk who has more than just looks.

Ever since her husband's early death, Arneatha has immersed herself in her work as an Episcopal priest who runs a school and several community programs. But something is turning cold and brittle inside her, and for the first time in her life she questions her faith. Her last shreds of certainty are stripped from her when she is unexpectedly thrust into the role of mother--and finds herself falling in passionate, school-girlish love with a handsome African man.

Finally there is Audrey, whose climb back from the depths of alcoholism nearly costs her her life, but brings renewal to the friends' commitment to each other.

Vibrant, funny, heartwrenching, and real, Pride is an unforgettable novel.

From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

Entertainment Weekly
A sexy tale...
Library Journal
Cary, author of the marvelous memoir Black Ice and the immensely readable historical novel The Price of a Child, attempts her first commercial novel here....Four African-American women, girlfriends since they were children, live through a tumultuous year of self-discovery, long-hidden secrets finally revealed, betrayal, and, ultimately, acceptance of one another's foibles. Roz, recovering from cancer, discovers that her politically ambitious husband has been involved in a longtime affair with one of her best friends; Tam, losing a bid for tenure at the college where she teaches, falls for the man of her dreams; Arneathea, an Episcopal priest lonely since her husband's death, meets a handsome African man and unexpectedly (and totally unbelievably) becomes a mother; and alcoholic Audrey struggles to overcome her addiction. Calling a novel "commercial" doesn't mean it needs to have flat characters, hackneyed writing, and an uninteresting plot. Cary's novel, which exhibits all these traits, is simply bad commercial fiction. -- Nancy Pearl, Washington Center for the Book, Seattle
Kirkus Reviews
A deftly written, if less-than-groundbreaking, second novel from Cary (The Price of a Child). Four complicated African-American women, all on the verge of 40, weave in and out of one another's lives in ways both sustaining and disastrous. The opening scene, where the primary players are introduced, is staged at a wedding from hell. Audrey's birth-son Bryant, who was effectively raised by his mother's well-to-do friend Roz, is marrying a girl whom neither woman approves of: a pregnant 18-year-old whose sole career ambition is to open a manicure shop someday. Roz and Audrey's friend Tamara, who's catered the wedding feast, is a college professor by trade and a gourmet cook by passion; and the final member of the foursome, Arneatha, is the Episcopal priest conducting the marriage ceremony. Slowly, underlying fault lines are revealed in all these women's lives: Roz is recovering from breast cancer, and the stress is interfering with her notorious ability to manage her family and help her politician husband, Hiram, who's now campaigning for a seat in Congress. Audrey's alcoholism has caused her years of anguish and misery, as well as the loss of her son; her journey back to sobriety is an arduous one, testing her friendships with the others. The very successful Tamara longs for more exciting work and a man who can accept her fiery spirit. And Arneatha, though seemingly the most stable of the group, has been concealing a years-long aching loneliness.....An adequately entertaining if convoluted story, with swift and lively dialogue throughout.

Product Details

Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
Sold by:
Random House
Sales rank:
File size:
2 MB

What People are saying about this

E. Lynn Harris
Lorene Cary has written a beautiful and heartfelt novel that shows how powerful the bonds of friendship can be.

Meet the Author

Lorene Cary’s new novel Pride (Nan A. Talese/ Doubleday, 1998; Anchor 1999) is told in the voices of four friends–“subtle, idiosyncratic characters...whose personalities seem utterly, and affectingly, distinctive,” according to The New York Times Book Review. It also praises the book’s ability to shift “between the staccato directness of black slang and the more formal cadences of standard English....”

The Price of A Child has been selected as the first city-wide One Book, One Philadelphia choice. The novel traces one woman’s escape from slavery and brings alive Philadelphia’s Underground Railroad history. A New York Times reviewer called the writer “a powerful storyteller, frankly sensual, mortally funny, gifted with an ear for the pounce [of] real speech,” and praised the novel as “a generous, sardonic, full-blooded work of fiction.” (Knopf, 1995; Vintage 1996)

Cary’s first book, published by Knopf in 1991, was Black Ice, a memoir of her years first as a black female student, and then teacher, at St. Paul’s, an exclusive New England boarding school. Arnold Rampersad has dubbed it “...probably the most beautifully written and moving African-American autobiographical narrative since Maya Angelou’s celebrated I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings.” Black Ice was chosen as a Notable Book for 1992 by the American Library Association.

Lorene Cary was graduated from St. Paul’s School in 1974 and received B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Pennsylvania in 1978. She won a Thouron Fellowship for British-U.S. student exchange and studied at Sussex University. She has received Doctorates in Humane Letters from Colby College in Maine, Keene State College in New Hampshire, and Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia.

In 1998 Lorene Cary founded Art Sanctuary, a non-profit lecture and performance series that brings black thinkers and artists to speak and perform at the Church of the Advocate, a National Historic Landmark Building in North Philadelphia.

Currently a lecturer in creative writing at the University of Pennsylvania, where she was a 1998 recipient of the Provost’s Award for Distinguished Teaching, Cary has lectured throughout the U.S. She began writing as an apprentice at Time in 1980, then worked as an Associate Editor at TV Guide, freelanced for such publications as Essence, American Visions, Mirabella, and The Philadelphia Inquirer Sunday Magazine, and served as Contributing Editor for Newsweek in 1993.

In 2002, Cary received the Women’s Way Agent of Change Award; in 2001 the Advocate Community Development Corporation’s Award for Urban Excellence; in 2000, a Philadelphia Historical Society Founder’s Medal for History in Culture; in 1999, the American Red Cross Spectrum Rising Star Award for community service; and in 1995, a Pew Fellowship in the Arts Fellowship. She serves on the usage Panel for The American Heritage Dictionary and the Union Benevolent Association board. Cary is a member of PEN and the Author’s Guild. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband, the Rev. Robert C. Smith, and daughters Laura and Zoë.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Pride 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
EGHunter01 More than 1 year ago
Friendship is a special bond; will these ladies' bond last? That is the question, and the author will take U on a journey to learn about true friendship. This journey will assist U to "see" how 2 truly B a confidant to others and assist Ur companions to grow. U "go" into the "world" of four friends dealing with their emotions and all the twists and turns of life. It's about trust, love, self-respect, and just being there when Ur friends need U. It was insightful and deep, worth the investment to read.