Did You Ever Have a Family by Bill Clegg
What’s it about?
How would you go on if everyone you loved disappeared in a flash? June Reid's life is destroyed when her whole family is killed in a unforeseen disaster. This novel examines the tragedy through the eyes of June, and also through the eyes of people around her.
What did it make me think about?
Another novel that makes us see how fragile life is. Although immensely sad, this book is also about the love we share. How we not only hurt each other, but we also save each other.
Should I read it?
This is Bill Clegg's first novel and he is a keen observer. His observations make this a book worth reading. I thought this was a really good book, but I would warn that it is also a sad book.
"The weekenders from the city not only take the best houses, views, food, and, yes, flowers our little town has to offer, but they take the best of us, too. They arrive at the end of each week texting and calling from trains and cars with their demands- driveways to be plowed, wood to stack, lawns to mow, gutters needing cleaning, kids to be babysat, groceries to be bought, houses to be cleaned, pillows needing fluffing. For some, we even put up their Christmas trees after Thanksgiving and take them away after New Year's. They never dirty their hands with any of the things the rest of us have to, nor shoulder the actual weight of anything. We can't bear them and yet we are borne by them. It makes for a testy pact that for the most part works."
Which character was the most tragic?
If you liked this try-
Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger
Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
Father of the Rain by Lily King
favorites from 2020
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best of winter 2020
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best of winter/spring 2017-18
best of spring/summer 2017
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on my nightstand
edge of your seat
― Charles William Eliot
3 to 4- I found some aspect of this book redeeming but would not recommend it.
5 to 6- I really enjoyed something about this book (characters, plot, meaning etc.) but it was uneven. Some aspects were stronger than others.
7 to 8- It was a good book. I liked lots of aspects of this book. I would recommend it.
9 to 10- I was sorry to turn the last page. I highly recommend this book!