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Marilee J. Layman

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07:06 pm: Junebug

An upscale couple in Chicago come from different backgrounds -- George is from the South, and Madeleine grew up all over the world and has an English accent. Madeleine owns an "outsider" gallery and when she hears about an artist whose work she wants to see, George comes along because it's near his family.

The packet says the family is molded by the South, but the parents, at least, are actually molded by a mid-size Protestant church. The brother is not very bright and has a pregnant wife who wants to name a girl baby "Junebug." The wife is even less bright and talks constantly. The brother doesn't want the baby, although his wife quotes a book that says he will when he sees it.

As you might expect, George slides back into that culture while Madeleine goes off to see the (very icky) artist. She tries to fit into George's family, but the mother doesn't want her. At one point, during a church potluck, George sings a hymn. Madeleine had no idea he could sing. The artist is pulled away by a New York agent.

The sister-in-law starts with cramps and the mother and Madeleine agree that Madeleine won't go to the hospital. George drops her at the artist and she manages to get him back to her agency. The baby is born dead, at least partly because of things the sister-in-law refused to do, and her family is falling apart. George wants to get out and when they leave, he tells Madeleine that he's glad to get away.

While the main plot is that Madeleine is in the wrong place, it's more subtle than that.

I liked it.

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