Monday, November 29, 2010

2010 book 277

Jessica Anya Blau's Drinking Closer to Home
After their mother has a severe heart attack, three adult siblings fly home to California while she's in the hospital. And family secrets come out, as they are wont to do. Blau flashes back to their childhood chronologically, which made everything flow really well, and made the contrasts between the rebellious teenagers and their adult selves much stronger. I thoroughly enjoyed all of these characters--energetic former cop Anna, passive middle daughter Portia, and gay animator Emery were all vividly drawn and I couldn't possibly pick a favorite--and their story. Things may have wrapped up a bit neatly but sometimes that's preferable to a messy ending. I will note that there were, weirdly, three minor characters named Lucy and two named Roy, but this was an uncorrected proof and that may be taken care of by the time it comes out in January. Even if it isn't, I highly recommend this--I love teasing, funny, slightly dysfunctional family stories. A.

(An e-galley was provided by the publisher.)

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