Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Monday, July 6, 2015

Did You Ever Have a Family by Bill Clegg...

How I Heard About It:  Until a couple of days ago I had never heard of this book or the author.  I got an email from NetGalley letting me know I could receive an ARC of this book.  I always love when this happens.  I of course downloaded it and actually read it in about two days.  

What It Is About:  There was a lot that happened to several different characters in this story.  The main story is about a mother that loses her daughter, her daughter's finance, and her younger boyfriend, and her X-husband to an explosion the night before her daughter's wedding at their home.  The woman's boyfriend (who was killed) was blamed by many in the community because of his "rough" background.  The woman attends the funeral of her loved-ones and then hits the road to be alone.  The story is also about the mother of the boyfriend and how she deals with the loss of her only son.  These two women are central to the story, but many other characters criss-cross their paths to complete the whole story.  One of these characters is Silas who is a young teen-age boy who lives on the street where the explosion took place.  He is the only person who truly knows what happened on that horrific night.

What I Thought Of It:   As I mentioned above I finished this ARC in two days.  Once I started I could not put the book down or stop thinking about this powerful story.  I have really never read anything like it before.  It was told from many different points of view and all of these perspectives were brought together in an "explosive" conclusion.  There were moments when my heart just hurt for these people and the loss they were dealing with.  As much as it "disturbed" me, I couldn't stop reading to find out what was going to happen.  I thought everything in this book worked and it was so well written.  It comes out in the fall and I know many readers will enjoy it as much as I did.

Who Should Read It:  This adult work of fiction will be perfect for the reader who enjoys a beautiful story about family, friends, relationships, and dealing with loss.  As a reader, if you like stories told from multiple viewpoints, then you will be satisfied with this story.  I think this is the debut novel for Bill Clegg and he really hit it out of the park with this story.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  5 STARS out of 5 Stars

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