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It is 1950, and after a disastrous honeymoon night, Ariah Erskines young husband throws himself into the oblivion of the roaring waters of Niagara Falls. "The Widow Bride of the Falls," as Ariah comes to be known, begins a relentless, seven-day vigil in the mist, waiting for his body to be found . At her side throughout, confirmed bachelor and pillar of the community Dirk Burnaby is unexpectedly drawn to this plain, strange woman, falling in love with her though they barely say a word. What follows is their passionate love affair, marriage, and children - a seemingly perfect existence. But the tragedy by which their life began shadows them, damaging their idyll with distrust, greed, and even murder .But in the end it is the children who are forced to deal with their parents chilling legacy of dark secrets, unresolved emotions, and cruel truths. Set against the mythic-historic backdrop of Niagra Falls in the mid-20th century, Joyce Carol Oates explores the American family in crisis. As in her "darkly engrossing novel" (Washington Post Book World) We Were the Mulvaneys, she presents the drama of richly interwoven yet secretive lives of parents and their children when challenged by circumstances outside the family. The Falls is a love story gone wrong, and righted.
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