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Showing posts from October, 2007
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Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant

By Anne Tyler

My first taste of a contemporary American great. The initial impressions are of a certain quaintness, a chronicle of everydayness turned slightly crooked, of a peculiar sense of irony, wicked almost. It’s an interesting read, one that makes me want to explore further.

Tyler thinks this is her best work (though her most famous is certainly, The Accidental Tourist that was made into a Hollywood movie) and it is a superbly crafted one. The Homesick Restaurant is what Pearl Tull’s second son Ezra runs in American suburbia. It is where an ill-ordered and messy family gather every once in a while for family meals that never get completed. Pearl is a memorable character, proud and prickly, left to fend for 3 children when her salesman husband ups and leaves. She is not a perfect mother and her foibles leave their mark on her children, each of whom grows up to flawed adulthood. Cody the oldest is convinced that his younger brother Ezra is his mothe…
Lazy Poetry II

Slumber awaits
A window turning orange
It is tardy

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Noisy shiny night
A thousand dreams flutter
And die in sleep

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Mind says silly
Heart begs to disagree
The war goes on

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Sun beckons flower
She responds hoping fruition
But withers when he sets

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Close ones turn blurry
The world turns upside down
And unreal clarifies
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Eve Green

Susan Fletcher
This is a lovely book with a distinctly fresh young voice. Her writing does remind me a bit of Arundhati Roy, though - unapologetically poetic in her use of words, there seems to be no holding back. There is something of the boldness and recklessness of the first novel in it (it is a first novel and a Whitbread prize winner at that). The language combined with the setting – the rough-hewn landscape of Wales, makes for pure theatre.
The plot itself is less electrifying - about a girl Eve Green, now pregnant and 29, reminiscing about the 8 year old she once was, brought to rural Wales from Birmingham when her young mother’s heart gives up on her. It describes her initial years at an unfamiliarly harsh and beautiful place that she grows to love; her slow discovery of her mother’s grand love story, her own conception and her father’s desertion; her friendship with Billy, the village idiot, who knows more than anyone else she knows and who still is in love with her mo…