*** This is a sneak preview of Ann Patchett's Book which will be in store on or around 1 August ***
Susan Midalia's Review
Critically acclaimed and much-loved writer Ann Patchett has produced another winner. The central character, Lara, a happily married mother of three spirited adult daughters, has worked industriously for decades with her husband on the family’s cherry orchard. At the request of her increasingly intrigued daughters, she tells them about her youthful relationship with an actor who went on to become a famous movie and television star.
At one level, Tom Lake is a story about telling stories: what we choose to disclose to or withhold from our loved ones, and why. But this is no postmodern work of metafiction; it’s a thoroughly engaging work of realism that explores the deceptive glamour of acting as a career, the choices that define us and the value of marriage and motherhood. The writing is wise without being ponderous or smug, and offers a skilful blend of pathos and humour. It is also shadowed by the realities of generational change; like Anton’s Chekov’s play The Cherry Orchard to which Lara alludes, it subtly charts the conflict between nostalgia and the often painful inevitability of social change.
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