Monday, January 21, 2013

Those We Love Most

Those We Love Most
Lee Woodruff

Those We Love Most

Genre: Women's Fiction

Summary (from Goodreads):  In her fiction debut, beloved writer and speaker Lee Woodruff offers an intimate and moving novel that explores the ways in which four lives are broken and made whole again after a shattering tragedy.

On a warm June day, Maura Corrigan is walking with her nine-year-old son, James, as he rides his bike to school. The unthinkable happens: he darts onto the street and is hit by Alex, a 17-year-old neighbor. As if James's death isn't tragic enough for the Corrigan family, in its wake an intricate web of relationships, secrets, and betrayals begins to unravel.

Told through the perspective of four family members, Those We Love Most chronicles how this sudden twist of fate forces each of them to confront their choices, examine their mistakes, and fight for their most valuable relationships. It asks the age-old question: Why do we hurt the ones we love most? Then it shows us how we can, in the most difficult of times, forgive ourselves and others for our transgressions.

Review: I chose this book based on a quick read of the back cover - a story of an ordinary suburban housewife whose family experiences a tragedy that will forever change them.  When I realized it was about the death of her child, I expected to find myself in tears.  Instead, I found myself bored.  Bored, and irritated at the coldness and selfishness of almost all the main characters.  The mother had been having an affair, the father was an alcoholic, the grandfather was also having an affair, and the grandmother was an unfeeling martyr. While the author attempted to resolve some of these issues at the end of the book, I didn't feel like most of the characters changed in any substantial way; instead, they papered over the problems they had, and decided to move on.  With all those negative comments, I'm still giving this three stars because I thought the descriptions of the very ordinary, long, busy, child-full marriage between the mother and father rang true in a way that most books don't realize.

Rating: 3 stars

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