A spool of blue thread / Anne Tyler.
Publication year: 2015
Publisher: Chatto & Windus 2015
ISBN: 9780701189518 (hbk.) :
Man Booker Shortlist 2015
'It was a beautiful, breezy, yellow-and-green afternoon'. This is the way Abby Whitshank always begins the story of how she and Red fell in love that day in July 1959. The whole family on the porch, relaxed, half-listening as their mother tells the same tale they have heard so many times before. And yet this gathering is different. Abby and Red are getting older, and decisions must be made about how best to look after them and their beloved family home. From that porch we spool back through three generations of the Whitshanks, witnessing the events, secrets and unguarded moments that have come to define who and what they are. And while all families like to believe they are special, round that kitchen table over all those years we see played out the hopes and fears, the rivalries and tensions of families everywhere - the essential nature of family life.
357 pages ; 24 cm
Milebush book group were pleased to have read this book which is easy to read although it did take a while to get into with four generations of names to sort out. Central to the book is the family home in Baltimore that itself becomes a character in the story. We all recognised aspects of life in a family that Anne Tyler describes so well with close observation, detail, feeling and humour. We enjoyed her turn of phrase, raising relationship issues within a family. We felt it was not as enjoyable as some of her other books and scored it 3/5.
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