Every Last One by Anna Quindlen
This is a story of everyday life of a normal, dysfunctional family told through the first-person narration of the mother Mary Beth. Until it's no longer normal everyday. The stark observations Mary Beth makes about her husband, children and friends are emotional and revealing. The relationship descriptions, especially those with her girlfriends, felt very true and an accurate portrayal of real life.
I wasn't sure at first if I liked Quindlen's writing style. But it took about 5 pages to get used to it. After which I plowed my way through it finishing the book in a day. Partly in thanks to a road trip where I had several hours in the car I could devote to the captivating characters and their story.
Some might argue that Mary Beth lacks emotions. I don't think she does. I think she suppresses them and as a result we might think her emotionless. Of course this just could be Quindlen's writing style as she was a journalist.
Either way it is a heart-wrenching book. You definitely don't want to be far from the Kleenex while reading this one. It left me feeling like I need to appreciate more the blessings I have. And a book that grips me so I can't walk away from it, a book that takes me for such an emotional ride, a book that stays with me for days - if not longer - after I finish it is a book I can honestly say I liked a whole hell of a lot. Even if it left me a weepy, sobbing mess.
Disclosure - No one paid me in any way, form or fashion for this review.
Next month - Fall of Giants by Ken Follett