I have not read Ann Patchett in a while. The last book was Commonwealth which was a disappointment. The Dutch House saddened and delighted me in many facets of the story. The evil second wife who steals the wealth of her second husband and robs his children of their inheritance remains a story throughout history. Men totally lose all sense of fairness in the face of a scheming woman. What a character resides in Mauve. A young girl with diabetes who handles the rearing of her brother and helping everyone when she needs the assistance herself. Ann Patchett delights the reader with her description of the setting and the characters. My only complaint is the absence of the list of characters. Many writers will supply this character listing and will draw a picture of the town or village. This book studies the relationships within a family and the minor characters within their orbit. The book focuses on the choice of a career such as becoming a doctor and the lack of ambition for this choice.