Monday, February 2, 2015

Ellen in pieces by Caroline Adderson

It's funny, while this book kept my attention, while I was reading it, I didn't think it was that thought provoking.  But then when I finished it, I couldn't stop thinking about it.  First of all, I don't think the description on the book jacket does it justice.  It makes it sound like a middle aged divorcee has a midlife crisis and turns to a much younger man for solace/entertainment/self-validation.  And while that does happen, this book is about so much more.

It deals with Ellen's relationship with her parents, who both die in tragic ways, her daughters, one a troubled ex drug addict, her ex-husband (and his mother), her two closest friends, her sister, her neighbours and even her dog.  The relationships are very complicated and often we see them from both sides as subsequent chapters are written from different perspectives.  In addition to changing narrators, at times new chapters jump ahead by a year or two - it can take a few pages to reorient yourself but I wouldn't say it's overly confusing.

What I found myself thinking about was the end of the book (which I won't give away) and whether it was satisfying.  I concluded it was as the relationships were very human and any loose ends were very realistic.  In all I enjoyed the book and it was a very easy read.

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