Friday, March 13, 2015

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler

The Cooke family was irretrievably broken by something that happened years ago. And while Rosemary would like to tell you about what happened when she was five years old, she's going to have to come at it in her own way - from the middle out, and perhaps with the beginning at the end.

The story begins in the middle with Rosemary in college, the only child left in her family and anonymous at a school far from her hometown. She's proud that no one here knows about her sister or her brother, and she's decided to purposefully not speak about her family. See, the Cookes were a close-knit family until Fern left: but the FBI is hunting older brother Lowell as a domestic terrorist, dad drinks too much, and their mother's psyche is full of fissures. What happened to Fern?

Rosemary's memory is spotty (she was just a child), and we'll learn the story as she remembers it, one bit, one crisis, and one discomfort at a time.

I loved this book, and sometimes forgot it's fiction - it reads like the kind of pain-filled autobiography that is popular to press.

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