Non Book Club Book Review

August 21, 2013 at 12:55 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )


I read, a lot.  I don’t review every book on this here blog because it would take a while and sometimes the books I read don’t merit a recommendation.  Not so with my latest, We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler.  I don’t want to get too detailed because there are some major plot points I could spoil and I’d hate to do that to anyone who’s interested but I will say that I LOVED this book.  As in, it might be a new favorite of mine.

Two opposable thumbs way up!

The story is told by Rosemary Cooke and we follow her as she navigates her college years and makes frequent introspective trips back to her childhood.  She had an unconventional upbringing and the way she and her siblings interacted helped her become the narrator we meet.  We learn all about her family and the trials they’ve faced while also meeting her collegiate friends.  We even get to see how her friends and family interact with each other and how they can influence one another without even knowing it.  There were parts of the book that were really humorous and parts that made me want to cry, so obviously I became attached.  While the big plot twist didn’t surprise me (I’d actually read it in a review before I read the book – whoops!) and it’s not essential for it to be kept a secret to still enjoy the book, I was glad they went about it like they did.  Something else I really enjoyed was that the main character was from Bloomington, Indiana and her father taught at Indiana University.  Seeing familiar names to grocery stores (like Sahara Mart, a place I lived near and shopped at for three years) and street locations made me pause and smile because I knew exactly where she was talking about.  I don’t know whether it’s the fact that I’m going to be visiting that wonderful town over Labor Day or just the pleasant surprise of coming across my old haunts in print, but it made me feel even more enveloped in the story.

I read the book in just under a week because I couldn’t really put it down.  Maybe I can convince my book club to read it but even if they’re not interested, I’ll talk it up.  Much like I’m doing to you.  And while it’s possible that the subject matter and location setting (not to mention the cover, which happens to be my favorite color) had something to do with my strong feelings towards the book, I really think the work itself is worth the time of day.  In fact, this may be a book thatI actually buy as opposed to simply rent from the library.  So if you’re looking for an entertaining and interesting read, ch-ch-check it out!

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