Monday, September 10

Bibliophile [Run]

Ann Pachett does it again.

Run, by Ann Patchett

After falling in love with Bel Canto, I immediately committed to reading every one of her novels. I started with Run; here's your blurb:

Since their mother's death, Tip and Teddy Doyle have been raised by their loving, possessive, and ambitious father. As the former mayor of Boston, Bernard Doyle wants to see his sons in politics, a dream the boys have never shared. But when an argument in a blinding New England snowstorm inadvertently causes an accident that involves a stranger and her child, all Bernard Doyle cares about is his ability to keep his children—all his children—safe.

Set over a period of twenty-four hours, Run takes us from the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard to a home for retired Catholic priests in downtown Boston. It shows us how worlds of privilege and poverty can coexist only blocks apart from each other, and how family can include people you've never even met. As in her bestselling novel Bel Canto, Ann Patchett illustrates the humanity that connects disparate lives, weaving several stories into one surprising and endlessly moving narrative. Suspenseful and stunningly executed, Run is ultimately a novel about secrets, duty, responsibility, and the lengths we will go to protect our children.

This was another stunningly beautiful novel. Her writing is just lovely- very lyrical, poetic. There were fewer "quotable" lines compared to Bel Canto, and the subject matter was not romantic, but it did deal with issues or race, economic status, and family delicately. The novel only spans 24 hours, but those 24 hours are very intense, and many chapters are memories and background information that helped shape the characters and explain, validate, or justify their present selves. I agree with many top critics in that I'd prefer if she tried to cover less ground but went deeper into each idea. Being a domestic drama, there were certainly a few cliches, but you just roll with it. I would recommend this, but if you are new to Patchett's work and want to be wowed, start with one of her other works.

Breakdown on my weekend coming tomorrow!

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