Anne Tyler is a veteran novelist who always churns out a decent read, but this one is particularly good. I'd go as far as saying her best yet. It is a moving but never maudlin exploration of grief and the challenges of losing a partner and having to carry on with life. It also has interesting things to say about living with a disability. The narrator is Aaron, a publisher in his thirties, whose wife dies in a freak accident. Aaron is wonderful character, I absolutely loved him - I would have gladly married him if he was real.
Despite its grim subject matter, it's not a heavy or depressing book at all. It's even quite funny in many places, thanks to Aaron's observations and insights. It's a skilful writer who can produce a novel all about loss without it being gloomy or melodramatic. I love the realism of her books, and the way you can believe in the things that happen and the people she creates. That's true of everything she writes, but this one struck a particular chord with me, even though I don't have personal experience of it.
The blurb makes it sound like it might be a ghost story or have fantastical elements - it doesn't really. You can choose what you want to believe, but there's nothing magical realist going on here. So don't let that put you off if you're not keen on such things in books.
Overall I think this is the best book Anne Tyler has written, and she's written a lot of good books - so I'd highly recommend it.
- Audio CD
- Publisher: Books on Tape (3 April 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0307969169
- ISBN-13: 978-0307969163
- Package Dimensions: 17.5 x 15.5 x 2.5 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 181 g
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