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“The Nest” of Entitlement

61nGgshIlVL._SL150_The Nest, by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney is an ambitious work weaving together many diverse characters and their overlapping storylines.  The central plot focuses around a family of four adult children all awaiting their slice of the coveted “nest”: trust money set to be released on the fortieth birthday of the youngest sibling.  Predictably something happens to thwart their dreams and each sibling finds themselves scrambling to deal with the fallout.

Apart from admiring the scope of labour involved in writing The Nest, I found it difficult to appreciate the novel.  I persisted mainly because of the acclaim the novel has received, but also because I thought I’d read that it gets better in the end.  It doesn’t.

The book touches on many topics relevant to today’s society, however; most of it feels contrived, superficial, even cliché.   Don’t count your chickens …could be the byline for the title, which is the main message of the novel.  The main characters are entitled and self-absorbed, a trait that we are led to believe stems from their mother’s alcohol induced indifference.

The audio version of The Nest is narrated by Mia Barron, who is particularly fond of emphasizing the final consonants of words:  good becomes gooddd.  Perhaps that contributed to my frustration.

Whatever the reason, I can only recommend The Nest as a light, easy read.  I won’t be recommending it as a book club selection, although we could talk about the missed potential.

Did anyone else come away dissatisfied by this read, or am just expecting too much?

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Categories: Book review fiction Literature writing

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V.J. Knutson

Writer, avid reader, former educator, and proud grandmother, currently experiencing life through the lens of ME/CFS. Words are, and always have been, a lifeline. Some of the best adventures, I'm discovering, take place in the imagination.

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