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More than anything, I loved the narrator. She made it all come alive. Nice work!
A simple tale of two families, in all their complexity... A beautiful take, beautifully told, beautifully read..
A highly readable, wonderfully absorbing tale about motherhood, secrets and lies, set in the affluent, verdant perfection of Shaker Heights - a purpose built suburb on the edge of Cleveland, Ohio.
The plot centres around two families, the well-heeled, comfortably complacent Richardsons - mother, father and four children - and the hard-up Warrens, single mother Mia and her daughter Pearl, tenants of the Richardsons with little known past. In between is a tug-of-love court case surrounding an abandoned Chinese baby adopted by friends of the Richardsons. This sparks high and conflicting emotions in Shaker Heights, forcing the town to take sides between the baby's birth mother, a desperate Chinese immigrant, and the McCulloughs. It leads nearly into the unwanted revealing of well-concealed secrets for both the Warrens and the Richardsons.
The story is skilfully told, weaving various narratives together. It is a character-led tale, well observed. The novel opens at the end, as the Richardsons' perfect home burns to the ground then takes us back to the beginning when the Warrens first arrive. The plot picks up pace as events take their toll and deeds have dire consequences. Lives begin to unravel and skeletons are revealed, and perfection of the family structure splits apart. It is a multifaceted novel full of interesting dimensions.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
Although the writing is thoughtful with lots of detailed descriptions, it is an absoulute pageturner; I finished it within a couple of days. It's very well written with a cleverly constructed plot which jumps backwards and forwards in time. The characters, although they are 'types', are believable and the book is very good at conveying their different viewpoints. An interesting story about motherhood, difficult life choices and race. Anyone who enjoys reading about complicated families and secrets should give this book a go. From the raving reviews in the press I expected slightly more, but overall I enjoyed it very much. It reminded me of books by Curtis Sittenfeld and Liane Moriarty.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Persevered to the end hoping something was going to happen. One of those "what was the point of that" books.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
lots of unexpected twists and turns. a great story with amazing detail. can tug at your heart strings.