Published by Ecco on March 22, 2016
A warm, funny and acutely perceptive debut novel about four adult siblings and the fate of the shared inheritance that has shaped their choices and their lives.
Every family has its problems. But even among the most troubled, the Plumb family stands out as spectacularly dysfunctional. Years of simmering tensions finally reach a breaking point on an unseasonably cold afternoon in New York City as Melody, Beatrice, and Jack Plumb gather to confront their charismatic and reckless older brother, Leo, freshly released from rehab. Months earlier, an inebriated Leo got behind the wheel of a car with a nineteen-year-old waitress as his passenger. The ensuing accident has endangered the Plumbs’ joint trust fund, “The Nest,” which they are months away from finally receiving. Meant by their deceased father to be a modest mid-life supplement, the Plumb siblings have watched The Nest’s value soar along with the stock market and have been counting on the money to solve a number of self-inflicted problems.
Melody, a wife and mother in an upscale suburb, has an unwieldy mortgage and looming college tuition for her twin teenage daughters. Jack, an antiques dealer, has secretly borrowed against the beach cottage he shares with his husband, Walker, to keep his store open. And Bea, a once-promising short-story writer, just can’t seem to finish her overdue novel. Can Leo rescue his siblings and, by extension, the people they love? Or will everyone need to reimagine the future they’ve envisioned? Brought together as never before, Leo, Melody, Jack, and Beatrice must grapple with old resentments, present-day truths, and the significant emotional and financial toll of the accident, as well as finally acknowledge the choices they have made in their own lives.
This is a story about the power of family, the possibilities of friendship, the ways we depend upon one another and the ways we let one another down. In this tender, entertaining, and deftly written debut, Sweeney brings a remarkable cast of characters to life to illuminate what money does to relationships, what happens to our ambitions over the course of time, and the fraught yet unbreakable ties we share with those we love.
I’m finally back with another post. I hate that nearly all of the posts I have written lately have been reviews. I really want to bring you more original posts, but that just hasn’t happened yet.
I recently picked up The Nest by Cynthia D’ Aprix Sweeney, which was a Paper & Glam book club read in March. Apparently I’m nearly always behind in all my book clubs, but at least I’m trying right….?
I love the quotes scattered throughout the book, which is typical of most books that I love. Here’s one:“Everyone’s always on the hunt for a mirror. It’s basic psychology. You want to see yourself reflected in others. Others—your sister, your parents—they want to look at you and see themselves. They want you to be a flattering reflection of them—and vice-versa. It’s normal. I suppose it’s really normal if you’re a twin. But being somebody else’s mirror? That is not your job.” Nora”-Simone.
The ending for the book struck me as a little sad since it appeared to have the siblings reunited at a wedding minus one of the siblings. I promised I wouldn’t spoil the book for people, so I’ll leave you guessing. I enjoyed the book, but like most of the reviews I have read it was not as memorable and fabulous as most people would have hoped. In fact, the beginning of the story was a bit slow and sluggish.
Hopefully I’ll be back soon with another post.Let me know what you have been reading lately.