I love to read, but I couldn't get past the first chapter in this book. The storyline was very contrived, it felt like I was reading something written by a 12 year old girl. And as shallow as this may sound, the main characters ridiculous names (NoNo, Patch, Jeep, Biddy, Min Foo, Poppy? Come ON, is this a children's book?!) were what finally made me say "enough" and return this book to the library. Thank goodness it was only borrowed.
On the New York Times Bestseller list. I enjoyed this book very much. It's about a woman in her 50's coming to terms with the fact that over the years, she has lived more and more of her life for others, and has no life of her own. How she discovers this and how she goes about changing the situation is very well written by Anne Tyler.
This is one of Tylers better books. The main character is more fully developed as the book unfolds, and it is hard to find a likeable protagonist that is not young, sexy, exciting. Tyler provides a likeable heroine that is middle aged, not particularly beautiful,over weight and wonders what the road not taken would have been like. I think most of her books are good reads but forgetable. This one is the exception.
Very interesting characters and family dynamics. This is a nice easy read - I read it on vacation while riding in the car. I was afraid the author was going to take this in a rote direction, but thankfully she veered from that. An enjoyable book about past choices, the road not taken and self identity.
I really like Anne Tyler. For me this book was good, not great. I didn't really connect with most of the characters, and the story line felt uneven to me. That said, Tyler is one of the best American writers going, and her writing is always superb, so it's always a pleasure to read her work.
Rebecca Davitch, a fifty-three year old grandmother, suddenly realizes that she has turned into the wrong person in this novel by Anne Tyler. At an engagement party for her stepdaughter, Rebecca suddenly realizes that her life, which had been heading down a certain path in college, had taken a drastic turn and now she is not where she should be. As Rebecca continues planning parties in her Baltimore home (a profession she married into), babysitting her grandchildren at the drop of a hat, and supporting her daughters through their disappointments and squabbles, she contemplates what her life would have (and maybe should have) been if she hadn't changed her course.
This is the first book I have read by acclaimed author Anne Tyler. Her writing style is lovely and calming and the characters are realistic and endearing. She develops them beautifully, and Rebecca's desperate search for purpose and identity (among family members who completely take her for granted) has an alarming ring of truth to it. However, the plot in this book was a little slow moving for me. Long chapters combined with too many characters introduced too soon made it difficult for me to get into the story right away. This certainly wasn't my favorite book, but I will seek out more of Anne Tyler's novels. After all, she did win the Pulitzer!
This was my first Ann Tyler novel, and I love her style of writing, so it will be the first of many I'll read I'm sure. I felt like I knew this large quirky family after the first chapter and didn't want to put the book down.
I just couldn't get into this one - beautiful descriptive writing but too slow for me. I gave up part-way through and didn't ever have the desire to finish! This was my first Anne Tyler book so maybe her slower style just wasn't for me.
I liked it, but it wasn't really what I thought it was going to be like or what I was looking for. I did not agree with the comments on the back of the book. I do feel the woman was not getting the love, respect or recognition she should have been getting from her family, but will keep my conclusion to myself so as not to spoil my ideas for future readers. I will say it is about getting older and wondering "what if" which I can identify with.
A New York Times Bestseller. "A lovely meditation on youthful expectations, midlife realities, love, loss, longevity, joy and recognizing one's true life." This book elicited quite a range of discussions, emotions and arguments in our book group!
This is classic Anne Tyler, who is an excellent writer. With her perfect prose, she delivers yet another tale about the lives of everyday people.
This one reminds me a bit of Tyler's Pulitzer Prize winning book, Breathing Lessons.
Caution to those who are looking for an action-packed or dramatic storyline. That's not Tyler's style. She writes in an introspective way about reality, almost always leading the reader to recognize something of oneself in the process.
One of the best Ann Tyler I've read! She writes with sensitivity and almost poetry, that makes what she's trying to convey crystal clear. Loved the many faceted characters and their quirkiness endearing them to me.
#1 National bestseller, a New York Times Notable Book.
"Maybe there's something glorious to be said, after all, for companionship, common cause, and sanctuary. And what there is to say, Anne Tyler has been saying for decades, with gravity and grace." - NY Times Book Review