Sometimes all you need to get you out of a reading funk is a well-written story of a messed up family. Guess what? I found one!
If you look at the front cover, you’ll see that Jonathan Safran Foer gave a pretty nice blurb for this debut novel–reason enough for me to pick it up. He’s a favorite of mine, and one who doesn’t blurb often.
Page one tells us that the husband in this family drama, Jack, has had an affair. The recently scorned Other Woman has printed out an entire novels worth of all of their emails and texts, wrapped it up with a bow and sent it off to Jack’s wife, Deb. Pretty common groundwork for any novel that includes an affair, I thought.
However! Usually in these novels, I find one of the two (Jack or Deb, in this case) completely unsympathetic. The wife is too wishy-washy, the husband too unconvincing, why were they ever even married in the first place? What did they see in each other?
In Among the Ten Thousand Things, I liked both sides. I totally believed that there was love in that relationship, love that would make you really consider staying or leaving. Yes, the story is sort of depressing. Yes, there are children involved who are directly affected by the marital drama. But yes, there are some hilarious moments and great lines.
Among the Ten Thousand Things by Julia Pierpont (Random House | 9780812995220 | July 7, 2015)