Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Review: The Vacationers by Emma Straub

Publisher: Riverhead 
Pages: 304
Received: Received a copy from Penguin Canada in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: May 29, 2014
Buy From Amazon.ca / Buy From Chapters.ca /
Buy From BookDepository.com

Goodreads Synopsis:

An irresistible, deftly observed novel about the secrets, joys, and jealousies that rise to the surface over the course of an American family’s two-week stay in Mallorca.

For the Posts, a two-week trip to the Balearic island of Mallorca with their extended family and friends is a celebration: Franny and Jim are observing their thirty-fifth wedding anniversary, and their daughter, Sylvia, has graduated from high school. The sunlit island, its mountains and beaches, its tapas and tennis courts, also promise an escape from the tensions simmering at home in Manhattan. But all does not go according to plan: over the course of the vacation, secrets come to light, old and new humiliations are experienced, childhood rivalries resurface, and ancient wounds are exacerbated.

This is a story of the sides of ourselves that we choose to show and those we try to conceal, of the ways we tear each other down and build each other up again, and the bonds that ultimately hold us together. With wry humor and tremendous heart, Emma Straub delivers a richly satisfying story of a family in the midst of a maelstrom of change, emerging irrevocably altered yet whole.

My Review:

This was actually a very cute and fun book for me. I had not heard about it until it was recommended to me, and I have to say I am glad that I took the recommendation. This is a great story about family in the middle of change and how they cope with so many things. What caught my attention with this story was the way it is described, the idea of a family going on vacation with all these secrets and slowly things are revealed.

The story is one of a family working through many issues, all while on vacation together. They are stuck in a small place for two weeks, and slowly things are revealed about each of the characters that changes their view on life and family. The story is told in third person perspective, as we follow each of the characters on this vacation and see how they deal with the fallout of their actions.

I adored the family dynamic in this book, it's a very real family that have their issues and try to hide them from others. But what really got me interested in this book was seeing if and how these characters would work through their issues. They are all very eccentric, and stubborn in the way they deal with problems, this is a family that just wants to sweep things under the rug rather than deal with it head on. But in the end, each person comes out different and stronger in many ways.

I did have a couple of issues with the story, the main one that made this book difficult was how the story jumped between the characters. There were a few times where I was confused as to what was happening because there were so many important players in the story, and there were quite a lot of subplots happening at once. It felt at times that there was too much going on in the short amount of time, and too many people to follow along with.

I do think this is a great book about family and learning to forgive and work through things. It's also about growing up, Emma Straub really shows that even adults still can be childish at times, but that in the end family bonds are truly strong and most people can get through even the biggest of hurdles. 

1 comment:

  1. I love books with fun and/or complex family dyanmics. Thanks for putting it on my radar!



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...