Friday, July 1, 2011

The Widower's Tale by Julia Glass

Percival Darling's adjustment to retirement isn't what he thought it would be. His grown daughter is back, her life in shambles. He has somehow been talked into allowing his beloved barn to be converted into a daycare center - which also means his skinny-dipping days in the pond are numbered. Plus, he's met a woman who reminds him (for the first time in decades) that he has baser urges. It's a book about the quirkiness of families and the inevitable yet unexpected life changes we all face.

I absolutely loved this book! Can't make any bones about it. Percy's a cranky treasure, educated and caustic, sarcastic and curmudgeonly, and yet soft and squishy at the center. He's not the kind of guy many people feel warmly toward, so it makes his name even funnier: everybody sounds like they're saying, "Percy, darling!"

Beyond the titular character, there are several other first-person storylines: a gay teacher at the daycare, Percy's Harvard-student grandson, and a illegal immigrant worker. There's a lot going on in the tight-knit cast of characters, but you come to love and enjoy all these people and their eccentricities.

No comments: