BookDragon Books for the Diverse Reader

The Past by Tessa Hadley [in Library Journal]

Past by Tessa Hadley on BookDragon via LJFour siblings gather in their childhood home to determine its future. The oldest is the most distant, unsure she’ll even stay the full three weeks they’ve planned to be there. The middle sister arrives with two children, complaining about her missing husband. The youngest sister inexplicably brings an ex-boyfriend’s adult son. Their one brother comes with his teenage daughter – and introduces his third wife.

Interrupting the fraught family reunion is a flashback to the titular past, which reveals how the family came to live in the home when their disappointed mother sought refuge from their philandering father.

So sly is Tessa Hadley’s (Clever Girl) revealing novel that even less-than-responsible audio direction might be forgivingly overlooked. British actress Caroline Lennon’s crisp, proper narration is marred by the lack of narrative breaks that clearly appear on the page but are ignored here, resulting in unnecessarily jarring jumps in story flow. Regardless, recommended for all libraries building literary fiction audiobook collections.

Readers: “Audio,” Library Journal, June 1, 2016

Published: 2016


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