Wall, Judith Henry
Wall, Judith Henry
PERSONAL: Born in IN; children: three. Hobbies and other interests: Travel, University of Oklahoma sports, health and fitness, environmental issues, talking about books.
ADDRESSES: Home—Norman, OK. Agent—c/o Author Mail, Simon & Schuster, 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020.
MEMBER: Sierra Club.
A Chain of Gold, 1987.
Love and Duty, Viking (New York, NY), 1988.
Handsome Women, Viking (New York, NY), 1990.
Blood Sisters, Viking (New York, NY), 1992.
Love and Glory, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1992.
Death Eligible, Bantam (New York, NY), 1995.
Mother Love, Bantam (New York, NY), 1995.
If Love Were All, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1998.
My Mother's Daughter, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 2000.
The Girlfriends Club, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 2002.
A Good Man, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 2005.
Also author of eleven romance novels under pseudonym Anne Henry.
ADAPTATIONS: Mother Love was adapted as a television movie titled A Family Divided.
WORK IN PROGRESS: The Surrogate, a novel, expected 2006.
SIDELIGHTS: Author Judith Henry Wall was raised in a military family. One of her earlier novels, Handsome Women, reflects this background. In the book, two sisters raised in a military family both marry military men themselves. The plot focuses on the sisters' relationships with their husbands and families. Reviewing the book in Publishers Weekly, Sybil Steinberg wrote that the novel "possesses an entertaining immediacy."
Wall's book If Love Were All focuses on middle-aged Charlotte Haberman. The recent death of Charlotte's husband allows her to travel after selling the family home in Nebraska. However, her efforts to move on upset her adult children. By the novel's end, Charlotte comes to realize that she has to make her own happiness. Praising Wall's "simple prose," a Publishers Weekly critic remarked that "The moral of this gentle tale … goes down easily." Diana Tixier Herald, writing in Booklist, called the novel a "solid, womanly story."
Strong female friendships are explored in Wall's The Girlfriends Club. In the book, four adult women who have been friends since elementary school share a vacation cottage in Kansas. A secret is kept by three of the friends to protect the fourth friend, Mary Sue, who is already suffering from cancer. The Girlfriends Club explores issues facing middle-aged women such as marriage, divorce, dating, and family, and a reviewer writing in Publishers Weekly noted that "the neat twist that ends this suspenseful, highly readable tale is appropriate, credible and satisfying."
The idea for Wall's next novel, A Good Man, came from an observation of Wall's nephew, Grant McFarland, that his aunt's novels feature more negative male characters than positive ones. Set in Texas and New York City, A Good Man focuses on the complicated friendship shared by three women. One of the friends is married to a man who has many good qualities although he is constantly overlooked. A Kirkus Reviews critic noted that the book contains "less-than-convincing apologias for good but dull husbands before getting to the genuinely intriguing questions." However, Harriet Klausner, writing in Best Reviews, stated that "Wall paints a powerful family drama."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, June 1, 1995, Denise Perry Donavin, review of Mother Love, p. 1732; July 1998, Diana Tixier Herald, review of If Love Were All, p. 1862; May 1, 2000, Danise Hoover, review of My Mother's Daughter, p. 1654.
Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 2002, review of The Girlfriends Club, p. 365; March 1, 2005, review of A Good Man, p. 258.
Library Journal, June 15, 1998, Barbara E. Kemp, review of If Love Were All, p. 109; May 10, 2000, Marianne Fitzgerald, review of My Mother's Daughter, p. 127; March 15, 2002, Marianne Fitzgerald, review of The Girlfriends Club, p. 110.
Publishers Weekly, January 26, 1990, Sybil Steinberg, review of Handsome Women, p. 405; June 8, 1998, review of If Love Were All, p. 45; May 1, 2000, review of My Mother's Daughter, p. 51; April 29, 2002, review of The Girlfriends Club, p. 42.
Best Reviews, http://www.thebestreviews.com/ (June 29, 2005), Harriet Klausner, review of A Good Man.
Judith Henry Wall Home Page, http://www.judithhenrywall.com (June 29, 2005).