Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Underside of Joy

Title:  The Underside of Joy
Author:  Sere Prince Halverson
Publication Information:  Dutton, Penguin Group. 2012. 307 pages.

Book Source:  I received this book through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program free of cost in exchange for an honest review. The book is a paperback advanced reader's copy.

Favorite Quote:  "Perfection is a weight none of us can bear, alive or dead."

The Underside of Joy is a book of a family - the one we are born with and the one we choose. Ella Beene has stumbled into and found a loving family - Joe and his children Zach and Annie and the whole clan that surrounds them. She is a mother to Zach and Annie whose birth mother left when they were very young. However, at the beginning of the book, Joe is an accident and dies. The birth mother comes returns, and a custody battle ensues.

The custody battle is the central focus of the book. There is no right or wrong, just different perspectives. The book is also about moving on after such a devastating loss in a family. In addition, this book also highlights a piece of US history - the internment camps during World War II which affected not just our Japanese residents but also the Italian community depicted in the book.

The book was a quick and enjoyable read. The look into history was an interesting one especially since so much of other historical documentation focuses on the internment of the Japanese community. Also interesting was the different ways family can manifest itself and how we can define a family by the bonds of love. Overall, not a favorite book but not a bad one either.

No comments:

Post a Comment