We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler

P1070084

A woman comes to terms with the loss of her adopted sister, an event from her distant past which has destroyed her entire family. It has left her emotionally bereaved, her mother clinically depressed and her brother on a path to criminal rebellion.

I was looking forward to sharing this book with you as it carried lots of promise at the beginning, but then it fizzled out, or rather spilled into a didactic exposé about animal rights and our accountability for how we use them and treat them to further ourselves. All of which I wholeheartedly agree with, but because of that exposé the story has lost its flow and dramatic tension, and the characters have lost their personalities.

Overall, an ambitious story with a conscience but without a spark. Worth reading, however, if only to make you think and wonder. Must be sober to read it. Might want to nibble on some healthy nuts. The complexities of family unpicked in a funny, but sometimes heart wrenching way.

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