Ms. Picoult has always been an average author for me. One that took advantage of current moral issues in society and exacerbated them into novels. This novel is so strong, so raw, and so captivating.. it is almost literature. I have never experienced an author that went from sophomoric to exceptional in one novel. The metaphoric parallels between humans and elephants are mesmerizing...but the book is not about elephants. The parallel between life and death allows us to suspend reality easily and without thinking,.. but the book really isn't about life and death. No matter what your reading preferences are...love story, mystery, suspense, or nature.. you are going to be glad you opened up this book and listened. Narration is stellar. I have nothing negative to say about this novel. Picoult has arrived.
After reading Edward Adrift and 600 Hours of Edward, I was trying to get my hands on anything written by Craig Lancaster. While listening to The Summer Son, I realized Lancaster's true strength as a writer.
Lancaster displays a similar writing style to Carson McCullers..tough, dark, and at times, harsh. Like Carson McCullers, he is passively descriptive one moment, and the next moment, is up and in your face.
The Summer Son is the age-old Father/Son story written from a fresh and unheard perspective. It is the story of a boy who grew up with a father, but never had a dad. Lancaster writes of the heavy- hearted consequences men endure who live with unresolved father/son dysfunction.
The story goes back and forth between childhood and adulthood, and flows as smooth as hot butter. The father's life unfolds for us slowly, slowly.. until we start getting glimpses of the man he was, and the man he is now. A man made of old worn out leather, but reaching out for a last chance.
The ending is unexpected, and just a class act. This book isn't sad, and it's not depressing...but it does have a bite. It will linger in your mind.
Not a book to read when you are down, The History of Love explores the ups, the downs, and the challenges of growing old, with a sideshow of serendipity thrown in. I can not say enough about George Guidall. A true master of narration, Guidall brings Krauss's protagonist to life, and stands him in front of us, holding a mirror to our face so we can clearly see what the future holds for all of us... if we are lucky enough to get that far. Read it. On a good day.