2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 6 October 2000
Lamott's novel, All New People is the touching story of Nanny Goodman's life growing up in suburban california. All New People is more of a string of short stories than one coherent novel. Each chapter is a new perspective on the family members or friends in Nanny's cluttered life: her fragile yet endearing mother, her father who is a writer and her confidant, her brother with whom she has a connection who seems to lurk in the shadows, and finally her friends who come from the 'wrong side of the tracks'. The novel deals with serious issues such as alcoholism, faith, and adultery without glossing them over and adds a humanistic dimension. Lamott's writing is delicatly crafted and poetic, but at times can seem almost preachy. For those who have read and loved her short stories in Traveling Mercies, this novel may seem familiar as it suggests a loose autobiography and is as equally enchanting, but it lacks some of the wit, humor, and emotional satisfaction of the former.