Five Reasons Why You Should Read The Most Fun We Ever Had

1. Lombardo’s creation of characters was pretty much everything that I could have asked for. There was depth, variation*, and so many layers. I had sympathy for pretty much everyone in the novel, while still feeling permitted to disagree with their actions and choices. They aren’t all necessarily likable characters (here’s looking at you, Violet), but they have stories that make you feel for them.

2. I come from a family of four siblings, although there were three girls and one boy, so I appreciated the exploration of the dynamics that occur between siblings, and how they are constantly shifting. I’ve gone through times that I’m closer to one more so than the others, times where I don’t feel I have a good grasp on them at all, and then times when things are pretty steady (we never have fought like this family, though). The ways the parents play into their development is also interesting, as they sort of disprove this idea of “if your parents are kind and in love your kids will end up fine.”

3.There are several plot lines, but they’re handled with precisions and care, crossing over one another when necessary, resolving when appropriate, and paced perfectly. Time is also manipulated, the narrative moving over several decades during the course of the story.

4.There are flaws in the novels for sure; there are things that get a touch annoying, like the parents’ relationship (and the fact that we’re supposed to be annoyed almost makes it more so), there are events that are a bit predictable, and the writing is perfectly fine but not amazing. It didn’t really matter to me, though, because I just felt so invested in the family, so must curiosity as to what would happen, and so much concern that everyone would be okay. Lombardo wins me over, despite any missteps.

5. And what this all brings me to? The show Parenthood, which I absolutely adored. As I was reading the last hundred pages or so it dawned on me that there are so many similarities (but not in a rip-off kind of way).

*This is not a socially progressive book by any means, so when I say “variation” I just mean that the characters themselves are different in terms of lives and personalities. This is an incredibly white book that showcases many moments of privilege (like Jonah’s missteps with the law; he would have gotten in ten times as much trouble if he had been a person-of-color). The fact that none of the characters really have to worry about money, rely on men for stability, and are able to luxuriate in their turmoil is definitely important to note. This then brings me to this conundrum- how can I love a book so much that is perpetuating an issue that our country has right now?

1 comment:

  1. Yassss! I just finished this book yesterday. So good. I love Wendy, even though she could be downright mean at times with her sarcasm. And definitely do not get me started on Violet. LOL

    I would like to see this book made into a series. Is Laura Dern too old to play Wendy? She'd be a great Wendy.