As of late I have been in a terrible book slump. I consider myself an avid reader and somewhere smack in the middle of my recent maternity leave (Aug-Oct), I hit a wall where I had no interest in reading anything other than my mail or the Sunday paper. (Prior to that, while my babies were in the NICU for 17 days, I mowed through all 1400 pages of the last two Harry Potter's. I needed another world to run to and Harry served that purpose beautifully.)
I tried to start Chuck Klosterman's Killing Yourself to Live but it didn't take. (Interestingly, Klosterman is my maiden name but I don't believe I am related to Chuck.) I also started The Boleyn Inheritance, An Irish Country Doctor, and Playful Parenting. None of which I got more than 35 pages into.
Then, thankfully, my friend Kelly suggested I read The Flying Troutmans. So I sent my sweet hubs to the A. Frank Smith, Jr. Library to procure it for me and into the Troutman's journey I went. (By the by, the A. Frank Smith library happens to be my favorite library. Not only is it located at my alma mater, but it also has the best nook and cranny style alcoves with soft leather chairs where one can get lost reading, writing, or whatever-ing for hours.)
Review: The journey of the Troutman trio (Aunt Hattie, nephew Logan, and neice Thebes) begins in Canada as they drive in search of the childrens' father. Their mother, Min, has once again gone off the deep end into depression, landed in a mental institution, and left the kids to fend for themselves. Aunt Hattie has come from Paris to save the day if only she knew what two teenage children actually needed from an adult figure. Author Toews' does a brilliant job of describing her characters, especially that of Thebes.
An Excerpt: "At the airport, Thebes came running over to me dressed entirely in royal blue terry cloth, short shorts and cropped top, and covered in some kind of candy necklace powder. The empty elastic was still around her throat. Or maybe she wore that thing all the time. She had fake tattoos all over her arms and her hair was intense purple, matted and wild, and she melted into me when I put my arms around her and tried to lift her off the ground."
What I enjoyed most was being tossed into the crazy road-trip with them, not sure where the story was going or how it would end. This book is also one of those that left me with questions at the end yet I enjoying trying to fill in the holes myself. The characters were honest, relatable, and real. A great book to quench my thirst for reading and bate my palate for more.