Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Lucky Us

Amy Bloom

“My father’s wife died. My mother said we should drive down to his place and see what might be in it for us.”

So begins this remarkable novel by Amy Bloom, whose critically acclaimed Away was called “a literary triumph” by The New York Times. Brilliantly written, deeply moving, fantastically funny, Lucky Us introduces us to Eva and Iris. Disappointed by their families, Iris, the hopeful star, and Eva, the sidekick, journey across 1940s America in search of fame and fortune. Iris’s ambitions take them from small-town Ohio to an unexpected and sensuous Hollywood, across the America of Reinvention in a stolen station wagon, to the jazz clubs and golden mansions of Long Island.

With their friends in high and low places, Iris and Eva stumble and shine through a landscape of big dreams, scandals, betrayals, and war. Filled with gorgeous writing, memorable characters, and surprising events, Lucky Us is a thrilling and resonant novel about success and failure, good luck and bad, the creation of a family, and the pleasures and inevitable perils of family life. From Brooklyn’s beauty parlors to London’s West End, a group of unforgettable people love, lie, cheat, and survive in this story of our fragile, absurd, heroic species.(from Netgalley)


My Thoughts

This is the story of several individuals who come together to form an unconventional family. There are two half sisters and their Dad, a kidnaped orphan, a night-club singer, and a cook. At the center of the story are Eva and Iris, the half sisters.

The oddest thing happened with this book. Throughout most of the time I was reading, I kept thinking - this is the strangest story. I’m not sure I really like this. But when I got to the last page and closed the book I thought - wow, what a story!

I think I had a hard time with how this family came together. But really, this is more a story of how we define family. It’s not necessarily about blood relationships, but about the people in our lives that hold meaning in our hearts. This delightful mix of quirky characters in Lucky Us came together out of desperation, but stayed together out of love.

Thanks to Random House, via Netgalley, for allowing me to read this in exchange for an unbiased review.

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