Tag Archives: Relationships

Review: Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance

Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance

Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance
By Alison Espach
Henry Holt and Co., 9781250823144, May 2022, 352pp.

The Short of It:

This book met all my expectations and then some.

The Rest of It:

Sally adores her older sister Kathy. They are about as different as two sisters can be, and yet they managed to do quite well in their shared bedroom. Sure, they squabble but Sally looks up to Kathy because Kathy always knows the right thing to say or do. She is sophisticated without trying and yet when they are alone together, she shares all her insecurities with Sally, which makes Kathy flawed just like the rest of them.

One summer, as they while away their hours by the community pool, Kathy catches the eye of Billy. A good looking boy, working at the snack stand. After some missteps, the two fall hard for one another, which leaves Sally to observe her sister’s new found infatuation from afar. She can’t help but feel a little jealous because one, she wanted to spend the summer with Kathy and two, what would it be like to have a boyfriend like Billy? She wonders if she will ever have someone like him.

As the summer unfolds, Sally finds herself attached to Billy in a way that no one wants. Linked by tragedy, the two struggle to find a way to move on and let me tell you, it’s heartbreaking and poignant but in such a good way. Memory and what could have been, had me re-reading passages as I slowly turned the pages. These characters leap off the page and you feel for them.

I loved this book. I don’t know what I was expecting when I picked it up but it’s good and I didn’t want it to end. It will be on my fave list at the end of the year.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

Review: French Braid

French Braid

French Braid
By Anne Tyler
Knopf, 9780593321096, March 2022, 256pp.

The Short of It:

Families. They expand, and evolve but not always in good ways.

The Rest of It:

The Garretts take a family vacation. Their first and last one in the summer of ’59.  Mercy and Robin’s marriage is strained by Mercy’s desire to paint again. Paint again, in another house, away from her husband, for days on end. Their adult kids are all living their own lives but in a detached, “from afar” way. All of them linked by blood but communication is not their strong suit. They find out about each other’s big life events from others.

This was a strange little read. The family dynamic was interesting but I didn’t find myself pulling for anyone in this story, really. It seemed to span too many years, decades actually and as the story unfolds it meanders along until it wraps up, in what I felt, was a very abrupt way. I think I would have liked it better if the story centered around Mercy and Robin’s marriage alone.

Anne Tyler is a great storyteller. I’ve enjoyed many of her novels but this one left something to be desired.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.