the next good book

Did You Ever Have A Family

By Bill Clegg


293 pages

What’s it about? How would you go on if everyone you loved disappeared in a flash?  June Reid’s life is destroyed when her whole family is killed in a unforeseen disaster.  This novel examines the tragedy through the eyes of June, and also through the eyes of people around her. What did it make me think about? Another novel that makes us see how fragile life is.  Although immensely sad, this book is also about the love we share.  How we not only hurt each other,  but we also save each other. Should I read it? This is Bill Clegg’s first novel and he is a keen observer.  His observations make this a book worth reading.  I thought this was a really good book, but I would warn that it is also a sad book. Quote- “The weekenders from the city not only take the best houses, views, food, and, yes, flowers our little town has to offer, but they take the best of us, too.  They arrive at the end of each week texting and calling from trains and cars with their demands- driveways to be plowed, wood to stack, lawns to mow, gutters needing cleaning, kids to be babysat, groceries to be bought, houses to be cleaned, pillows needing fluffing.  For some, we even put up their Christmas trees after Thanksgiving and take them away after New Year’s.  They never dirty their hands with any of the things the rest of us have to, nor shoulder the actual weight of anything.  We can’t bear them and yet we are borne by them.  It makes for a testy pact that for the most part works.”

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