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Customer reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
13
Under the Same Stars
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on 16 June 2013
I read a recommendation by Irvine Welsh on Twitter for this book and thought I'd give it a go. The story looks at the estranged relationships of brothers, father and sons and husbands and wives. I think the prose style of the writing keeps you engaged from the start as we follow the lives of two brothers that set off on an American road trip to find their father who abandoned them when they were very young.

Culture, religion and family routinely come under the spotlight during this journey and we how different the lives of the brothers have become since their estrangement from each other, with one in the US and the other in the UK. Worth a read.
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on 11 May 2015
Stumbled across this author, after reading a review and something about the subject matter drove me to make a purchase...really glad I did, will likely be reading more from Mr Lott .....a combination of stark, dry, sinicism, married with blind faith and optimism ...the uk meets the us of a...and two brothers gain a deeper understanding of that which propels us forwards.....brought about by a classic all american road trip...lots of hidden gems in this novel.
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on 22 August 2013
I enjoyed this as a holiday romp. It's not too profound but, equally, not vapid. It retained my interest to the end and so deserves some recognition.
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on 22 July 2016
A lovely book - full of understanding of sibling rivalry - brilliant at evoking the USA.
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on 30 October 2014
Easy read. Great descriptive yet unpretentious description of characters & setting. Interesting believable characters. Some thought provoking ideas. Love to be able to ask their father more questions about his thoughts & feelings at the time of leaving for America!
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on 29 May 2013
I liked this book very much because it has brilliant dialogue, and a psychologically very interesting story line. A memorable road novel.
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on 17 April 2012
Englishman Henry Nash was a great fan of things American and even called his sons Salinger (after J.D) and Carson (after McCullers). Unfortunately for them he left for new freedoms in the U.S while they were still in need of a dad. Carson later settled in America himself, but neither son had any relationship with Henry after he absconded. In 2008 when he is 40, Salinger reluctantly accepts an invitation from his older brother to go on a road trip in search of their father. Salinger who takes prozac for his mood swings, arrives in New Orleans trying to keep the peace, but unable to repress sardonic comments about Carson's apparent Born-again optimism.

As financial markets collapse and America is choosing a new president, the brothers spar, compromise and travel by new Lexus and motorbike towards New Mexico, via Dallas, the pueblo at Sky City, Amarillo, Albuquerque, Las Cruces, and Pecos, where one of them experiences some whacky, intense Native American healing. The road trip is not exactly Easy Rider, as the brothers have different attitudes towards their goal and they harbour their own truths about their childhood experiences. Salinger becomes increasingly uneasy about his girlfriend in London not responding to his email messages, and Carson seems impervious to any analysis of the familial baggage and Salinger's Cain and Abel analogies.
When they arrive at the truth, will it set them free?
There is some zippy dialogue and an odiously engaging policeman called Wendell who hinders and helps them on their way. Tim Lott writes well, with a sense of working through the theme of unresolved sibling rivalry conscious and unconscious, the challenges of living with not understanding, of having old assumptions challenged and whether light can break through into the dark places. I also felt I'd been on a bit of a tour of a chunk of America.
12 people found this helpful
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on 26 October 2013
Thank you Tim Lott. This is easily the best book I've read this year. I was holed up last week in a dismal room in Bangkok with never-ending rain. Actually the room was nice but the view was of an exercise room. Anyway - who wants to know that? But I so enjoyed your book. Interesting characters - well especially the two brothers - and a real taste of the southern US. It's one narrative and yet there are other mini-stories along the way. The end is amazing - a new take on the errant father and revelations about the polaroid that Salinger carries with him.
It's very different from Tim Lott's moving 'Scent of Dried Roses' which is autobiographical.
Tim, you're a great writer. You might like to know that I've put 'SDR' in the local library here in southern Thailand and I've left 'USS' in the hotel in Bangkok.
Probably no-one's going to rate this review as 'helpful' but hey, Tim I hope your publisher picks this up and sends it to you.
Again, thank you.
11 people found this helpful
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on 24 May 2013
it's quite a readable novel, but the writing is mediocre, the stereotyping of Americans is a bit crude and the ending is all a bit too good to be true.
3 people found this helpful
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on 28 November 2012
This is an average novel.Worth a read but not a classic. A bit contrived in places to make the story work, so not very believable.
2 people found this helpful
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