by: Elizabeth Strout
Lucy Barton is a writer, but her ex-husband, William, remains a hard man to read. William, she confesses, has always been a mystery to me. Another mystery is why the two have remained connected after all these years. They just are.
So Lucy is both surprised and not surprised when William asks her to join him on a trip to investigate a recently uncovered family secret—one of those secrets that rearrange everything we think we know about the people closest to us. What happens next is nothing less than another example of what Hilary Mantel has called Elizabeth Strout’s “perfect attunement to the human condition.” There are fears and insecurities, simple joys and acts of tenderness, and revelations about affairs and other spouses, parents and their children. On every page of this exquisite novel we learn more about the quiet forces that hold us together—even after we’ve grown apart.
At the heart of this story is the indomitable voice of Lucy Barton, who offers a profound, lasting reflection on the very nature of existence. “This is the way of life,” Lucy says: “the many things we do not know until it is too late.”
Helen says: 🤓🤓🤓🤓
I loved the sequel to My Name is Lucy Barton. It really wasn’t a sequel, more a follow up. You don’t have to read the first to enjoy Oh William!. I read this book compulsively. It was written in a random stream of consciousness of memories, which sounds disjointed, but it flowed very well. Elizabeth Strout really captures the human condition in her writing- how people actually interact- no phoniness! It feels very authentic and amusing too!
Holly says: 🤓🤓🤓🤓
My favorite book of the month, but in a not so favorite month. If you are a fan of Olive Kitteredge or I Am Lucy Barton, you will probably like this one too. A little slow, but a nice look at a long-term relationship between Lucy and her previous husband (and father of her girls) as they navigate their golden years – through ups and downs. A “Life is complicated, but people are mainly good” tale, and an excellent study of character.