“The future looks bleak for 13-year-old Jake growing up in the 1980s. Abandoned by a missing brother and absent father, he’s left with Mary, his bipolar, alcoholic mother, and seeks escapism in the stories of Greek mythology. Then, just as reconciliation with long-lost family members means things start to look up, a holiday unearths unbearably dark secrets. The narratives of both Jake and his mother weave a poetic web from the strands and secrets of their unpredictable and unstable family life into a tale that’s carefully observed, unexpected and mesmerisingly beautiful.”
Reviewed this month alongside A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore and Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger.