Sunday, June 26, 2016

2016 book 113

Maggie O'Farrell's This Must Be The Place
O'Farrell's latest (after Instructions for a Heatwave, The Vanishing Ace of Esme Lennox, and The Hand That First Held Mine, among others) is more of what she does so well: complicated families with complicated histories, just trying to figure it all out and make it through. The main figure here is American Daniel, an academic, center of a web of wives, exes, children, and others--all of whom get to have their say. Daniel is actually the weak spot here--I was never really invested in him as a character and didn't really care about his issues, whereas his mourning, eczema-suffering son, intriguing wife (a famous actress who ran away from her life and now lives isolated in Ireland), and charming stepson were all much more compelling to me. But I was definitely caught up in these interwoven figures and, as always, enjoyed O'Farrell's writing. I definitely recommend this as a summer read for those who want something a little meatier but still satisfying. A-.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in July.

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