The author of the highly acclaimed The Fates Will Find Their Way returns with a novel about a far-flung family reunited for one weekend by their father's death.
Five minutes before her flight is set to take off, Kate Pulaski, failed screenwriter and newly failed wife with scarcely a hundred dollars to her name, learns that her estranged father has killed himself. More shocked than saddened by the news, she gives in to her siblings' request that she join them, along with her many half-siblings and most of her father's five former wives, in Atlanta, their birthplace, for a final farewell.
Written with huge heart and bracing wit, Reunion takes place over the following four days, as family secrets are revealed, personal foibles are exposed, and Kate - an inveterate liar looking for a way to come clean - slowly begins to acknowledge the overwhelming similarities between herself and the man she never thought she'd claim as an influence, much less a father. Hannah Pittard's "engaging and vigorous" (Chicago Tribune) prose masterfully illuminates the problems that can divide modern families - and the ties that prove impossible to break.
"Reunion is sharp, funny, and moving, and on every page Hannah Pittard brilliantly captures the sweet enduring chaos of sibling love." (Jim Gavin, author of Middle Men)
"With Reunion, Hannah Pittard proves herself to be an alchemist of the highest order. In this unique story about the weirdness of family, she mixes pain and humor together to make something magical. The novel's main character, Kate, is complex and difficult and untrustworthy and, most importantly, utterly winning, one of the most convincing characters I've met in a long time. Reunion slayed me." (Kevin Wilson, author of The Family Fang)
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The secrets we keep
Imagine sitting on a tarmac, stuck on a plane, is when you find out that your father has committed suicide. What a way to open the book! The caveat? Kate’s not really close with her father at all. In fact, there’s quite a bit of resentment there. The way she paints her father isn’t very pretty. I was hooked and didn’t want to stop listening to the book right from the get-go.
Kate travels with her siblings to Atlanta to bury their father. You don’t find many books placed in Atlanta, but I loved hearing all the landmarks noted in the book.
Kate struggles as she’s surrounded by step-mothers, half siblings, and her brother and sister, whom she’s hiding a big piece of her life from. Kate hasn’t come clean to them yet about being in massive debt and practically having no money now that her husband wants a divorce. Oh yeah, she hasn’t told them about that yet, or how she was unfaithful in her marriage. Because of their father, Kate and her siblings are totally against infidelity. No wonder Kate hasn’t found a way to tell them. Once Kate finally takes a good look at herself can she feel the closest to her family in a long time. The concept of keeping parts of you hidden from those you’re supposed to be closest to was very interesting to read throughout the book. The author explores not only the secrets we keep from the people who believe they know us best, but also the secrets we keep from ourselves. This really spoke to me.