The Clock Winder


The Clock Winder book cover
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"Anne Tyler is a magical writer." —Los Angeles Times

Mrs. Emerson, widowed with seven adult children, lives alone in crumbling Victorian mansion outside Baltimore with only a collection of antique clocks to keep her company. Elizabeth Abbott—twenty-three years old, aimless, bohemian, and beautiful—leads a vagabond lifestyle until she happens upon Mrs. Emerson’s home and convinces the older woman to hire her as a handyman.

When three of the strange, idiosyncratic Emerson children return to their childhood home for a visit, they are irresistibly drawn to Elizabeth. With wondrous observations and bittersweet humor, Tyler shows how this unsuspecting young woman becomes the North star that helps a stumbling, dysfunctional family find its footing.


“To read a novel by Anne Tyler is to fall in love.” —People

“Her brilliance in capturing the ripples on the surface of family life gives her claim to be the Jane Austen of our age.” —The Daily Mail (London)

“Tyler has explored the oddities of humanity with a cool yet loving eye, finding unexpected depth in ordinary people and showing how they manage to hand on to each other despite all the forces that conspire to drive them apart.” —The Washington Post

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