The Tin Can Tree Author:Anne Tyler In the small town of Larksville, the Pike family is hopelessly out of step with the daily rhythms of life after the tragic, accidental death of six-year-old Janie Rose. Mrs. Pike seldom speaks, blaming herself, while Mr. Pike is forced to come out of his long, comfortable silence. Then there is ten-year-old Simon, who is suddenly without a baby ... more »sister -- and without understanding why she's gone.
Those closest to this shattered family must learn to comfort them -- and confront their own private shadows of hidden grief. If time cannot draw them out of the dark, then love may be their only hope....« less
A slim volume that I had to plow through, populated by the most boring group of Southern gothics that I was ever introduced to. I stuck with it simply because I wanted to see if anything ever happened to these people. People Magazine says, "To read a novel by Anne Tyler is to fall in love." After a brief infatuation with a great title, I can truthfully say, I did not fall in love with this novel.
The hallmark of Anne Tyler's novels is that she takes on the minutiae of everyday life. When it works well, it's an amazing voyage into the hidden hearts of ordinary people. When it doesn't work well, it's boring as heck. This one doesn't work well. The characters are mostly reacting -- or not -- to the accidental death of a neighborhood child, but mostly they just move around on the stage having inconsequential conversations, ending up right back where they started.