Saturday, April 23, 2016

The Children; Ann Leary

The Children; Ann Leary
St. Martin's Press - 2016

The Children is a story about blended families and family secrets told from the POV of 29 year-old Charlotte (Lottie) Maynard, a reclusive mommy blogger who has never been a mommy but makes a decent living pretending to be one.

"Lake Side" is a somewhat rundown, sprawling lake side home in Connecticut that had been in Lottie's stepfather's family for generations.  When her stepfather, Whit Whitman, passed away three years earlier, the trust allowed for Lottie and her mother Joan to remain in the house even though Whit's sons Spin and Perry now own the property. The brothers never lived there when their father was alive and had only visited on weekends. Lottie's sister Sally also grew up at Lake Side but left years earlier for a job in NYC. Sally's stability is questionable and after losing her job in the city, she returns to live at Lake Side.

Things heat up when Spin returns to Lake Side with his fiancee Laurel Atwood. The sisters, especially Lottie, are intrigued by Laurel and try to find out as much as possible about her on various social media sites. The sisters feel there is something about Laurel that isn't quite right but, who in this family is really harboring the most secrets?

This story took me a while to get into this story. I did love the very different personalities of this blended, quirky family.  There is a lot of conversational dialogue going on throughout which doesn't always work well with me, but overall I felt the story was a nice mix of funny, heartbreaking and drama with but of psych thriller thrown in the mix.  Although the ending seemed rushed, I do think readers who tend to enjoy family drama and dysfunction will want to try this one.  After absolutely loving this author's debut novel, The Good House, I have to say, Leary's latest book, The Children, left me somewhat disappointed.

3.5/5 stars
(eGalley)

8 comments:

  1. I am not sure if this is for me, but you never know. I may try it one day! Good post!

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    1. It's worth trying, just tad disappointed as I loved her debut novel so much.

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  2. Sorry to see this isn't as good as The Good House. Hopefully the dialogue will work better for me.

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    1. It's different - not sure if you read The Good House, her debut, which I loved.

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  3. Hm I loved The Good House. I'll probably give this one a try at some point.

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  4. The Good House was one of my favorite audios a few years ago. Sorry to hear this was was not as good... maybe I'll borrow it from the library.

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  5. Once I got into it, I loved The Good House (on audio). This one sounds like one I'll pass on. Thanks for the review, Diane.

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