Sunday, November 17, 2013

busy standing still

Perfect by Rachel Joyce
Rating: 2.5 stars (out of 5)
Genre: fiction
Review: Any writer who can write a sentence like "If Byron ever tried to hug [his father], and sometimes he wished he could, the embrace ran away at the last minute and became a handshake," as though it just flowed off her pen in the first 50 pages of a book sets up high expectations in her readers.  Not only is this a beautiful sentence to read, but it also tells us everything we need to know about Byron's relationship with his father.

Joyce's language does not disappoint throughout the book, but the pacing does.  There's a lot of tension in this book, which is interesting because it doesn't feel like a lot actually happens.  Most of the energy seems to come from the collective inability of all the characters to get beyond their own anxieties and actually fix the situations in which they find themselves.  And that's just not something I have any patience for, either in print, or in real life.

FCC Disclaimer: I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for this review.