This wistful, episodic second novel by Swann (Serious Girls) is made up of vignettes about four sibling "flower children" whose parents are Pennsylvania farm country back-to-the-land hippies. Swann portrays the free-floating '70s coming-of-age of these four siblings—Lu, Maeve (who narrates much of the novel), Tuck and Clyde—who delight in running freely in the countryside, but grow embarrassed by the unconventional practices of their politically active, casual-dressing parents. Their parents, Sam, a Harvard graduate, and Dee, a gardener and artist, built their own house, and though they aim to raise their children in an ideal world "in which nothing is lied about, whispered about, and nothing is ever concealed," the parents separate, and subsequent storylike chapters delineate their children's sometimes rocky confrontation with the world of TVs, junk food and schoolyard cliques. The parents' transient love interests make impressions on the children: Dee's live-in boyfriend, Bobby, avenges the shooting of the children's dogs by local hunters; later, the children set out to rid themselves of Sam's latest squeeze, a glamorous but dim-witted psychologist. Swann wisely forgoes childlike stream-of-consciousness narration in favor of lean, direct storytelling, a choice that makes this more substantial and rewarding than the vast majority of coming-of-age novels. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Writing in lucid, crystalline prose...[Swann] captures the incongruities of the 1970s counterculture as seen from the point of view of a young child, the shifting attitudes the narrator and her three siblings take toward the adult world as they slip-slide from childhood into adolescence, and the incalculable ways in which the passage of time colorizes the past.
The New York Times --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This sounded like an interesting book but I gave up after the first few chapters. It just rambles on and on... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Geraldine
This was the worst book that I have ever attempted to read. I thought that it would be a great look back at the 60's however it was more like reading a never ending sentence. Read morePublished 10 months ago by marysview
I was intrigued by the cover of this book. I grew up during the same era, and the picture of the children playing (in 70's attire) took me back to my childhood. Read morePublished 15 months ago by B. Youngblood
I really enjoyed this book. It shows us the perspective of these types of families from their own experience. Great read!Published 16 months ago by Katherine Olson
This book was an easy read though I felt like there was some empty blanks in structure and time linePublished 16 months ago by annkat63
a little hard to read. Very disjointed. thoughts barely put together instead of a story. would have enjoyed in story form.Published 20 months ago by Paula Tintor
It was Ok. could have been better. sometimes, it was interesting but nothing that memorable. My friend borrowed and she like it.Published 21 months ago by D
Somewhat interesting book. The story and characters are never really developed. Never felt a connection. Read morePublished 22 months ago by KnittingMcNair