7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Anyone for metaphysics?,
This review is from: Familiar (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have liked J Robert Lennon's work very much, especially The Light of Falling Stars and The Funnies, but always in his books I find that the earth is not steady under the characters' feet, or under mine by the end of book, and this one has even more of that vertiginous feeling.
The story of Elisa might be classed as science fiction but we never find out whether she has actually been transferred from one multiple universe world to another. All this could be entirely in her head. Driving home from visiting her son's grave she finds herself in the blink of an eye driving a different car, wearing different clothes and considerably heavier than she thought she was. Home is where it was before but there are changes, some extreme ones. Juggling both her old world and her new brings her in conflict with her husband and her therapist, but far from letting go of her old world she tries to return herself to the person she used to be while also trying desperately to make sense of her situation.
Her grown children are estranged, and a visit to them is disastrous. Maybe the boys suffered at their parents' uncertain hands but their behaviour, particularly that of the younger one, points to nature as much as nurture in the formation of character. Elisa is not an easy woman to like but she is a fighter and I couldn't help siding with her.
The ending brings no clarity to the story, but somehow is all the more powerful for that. I shall remember Elisa, and the feeling that everything about her world is somehow off-kilter.