GAIL ALBERT, PHD
Matters of Chance: A Novel
National Book Award Finalist
"Hannah was my best friend until her father killed her mother with the bread knife when we were eight. Hannah found the body lying on the kitchen floor late on October afternoon and ran screaming down the stairs into my aunt's arms. Later my uncle said that Hanna's mother had always nagged too much; and he cried because they'd all known each other since before the war.
. . . The knife had always been there, ready to cut great slabs of the pumpernickel Isaac brought hone from work. I can see him using it on Rose instead of the thick black bread if she pushed him just too far when he already had the knife in his hand. And yet I can't for al the years I've thought about it.
I get angry too; everyone does. With my husband, say , or with my children. . . .
I am an associate professor of neurobiology at a well-known university. My husband is a doctor, a cardiologist, a Jewish blond from California, with the dazzling smile of a Los Angeles lifeguard hoping to catch the eye of a Hollywood film maker. My marriage is happy, my children normal, and my department voted me tenure a year ago.
. . . I've attained the American Dream and it's come near to killing me.
—Matters of Chance, from Chapter One
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