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Seven Days of Us: A Novel Hardcover – October 17, 2017
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"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
A dramatic coming-of-age story set in the decade after World War II, "Warlight" is the mesmerizing new novel from the best-selling author of "The English Patient." Pre-order today
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Praise for Seven Days of Us
"Sharply funny and beguilingly British.”—People
“You will laugh at hilarious situations and be touched by others, ultimately discovering that the Birch family is basically every family.”—Associated Press
“Witty and deeply heartfelt, Seven Days of Us is an insightful, character-driven look at the real failures, fumbles, and false starts that define family--and why understanding the people closest to us might be the hardest thing in the world.”—Emily Giffin, #1 New York Times bestselling author
"[A] smart, delightfully funny, page-turning debut... Hornak imbues each character with a singularity that underscores her spot-on insight about human nature."—Publisher's Weekly
“Alternately tender and razor-sharp, Seven Days of Us will resonate with anyone who regresses the minute they step inside their childhood home.”—Booklist (starred review)
“Hornak’s brilliant debut manages to be simultaneously clever, funny, and poignant.”—Library Journal (starred review)
“Hornak spends time looking through each character's eyes, and readers' sympathies will shift with each change in point of view. The richly defined inner lives of the Birches propel the story as they try to feel their way through their individual crises.”—Shelf Awareness
"This slightly dysfunctional brood had me laughing…but a surprising plot twist also reminded me that family always comes through in tough times.”—First for Women
“LOVED it! Warm and humane, funny and sad, with a great, twisty plot, Seven Days of Us is absolute pleasure reading from beginning to end. Francesca Hornak is a true talent. Just gorgeous!”—Marian Keyes, international bestselling author
“Perfect for fans of cozy Christmas films like Love Actually and The Family Stone. An emotional but ultimately uplifting holiday story.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Francesca Hornak is hilariously funny, with characters that jump off the page, grab you, and just won’t let go.”—Rosamund Lupton, New York Times bestselling author of Sister
“With its wry observations on class, family, and ‘veddy British’ traditions, Francesca Hornak’s absorbing debut sparkles with glints of Nancy Mitford and Julian Fellowes.”—Stephanie Clifford, New York Times bestselling author of Everybody Rise
“Hornak’s wry, masterful portrayal of a family in crisis is filled with flawed and funny characters who will capture—and break—your heart.”—Fiona Davis, author of The Dollhouse and The Address
“If you like your families dysfunctional and your novels whip-smart, then Hornak’s delightful debut about a family discovering the unexpected benefits of forced quality time over the holidays will enchant your inner ironist and sentimentalist alike.”—Courtney Maum, author of Touch and I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You
“Hornak offers a tragicomic holiday tale that’s perfect for fans of family sagas and multiperspective narratives like Love Actually.”—BookPage
“[A] fantastic debut...The family dynamics, revelations, and role reversals make this exceptional ‘Brit Lit’ a real page turner.”—RT Book Reviews
“Warm hearted, witty and wise, Seven Days of Us is hugely entertaining.”—Saskia Sarginson, author of The Other Me
“Not all debut novels live up to expectations, but this one exceeds them. Hornak's imaginative, nicely-paced, engaging story is one you won't soon forget. At the very least it's a guaranteed escape from your own dysfunctional family.”—NJ.com
“An entertaining mix of pathos and humor.”—The Missourian
About the Author
Francesca Hornak is a journalist and writer whose work has appeared in newspapers and magazines, including The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Elle, Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, and Red. She is the author of two nonfiction books, History of the World in 100 Modern Objects: Middle-Class Stuff (and Nonsense) and Worry with Mother: 101 Neuroses for the Modern Mama.
Top customer reviews
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What can possibly happen in just seven days. Oh, a lot. Especially when everyone is harboring a secret, your mobile service is spotty, you aren’t binging on Netflix, and you just might be forced to come face to face with each other for the first time in a long time.
Amusing, touching, prickly, and wounding. This is seven days.
For the next seven days, the Birches are locked down, cut off from the rest of humanity—and even decent Wi-Fi—and forced into each other’s orbits. Younger, unabashedly frivolous daughter Phoebe is fixated on her upcoming wedding, while Olivia deals with the culture shock of being immersed in first-world problems.
As Andrew sequesters himself in his study writing scathing restaurant reviews and remembering his glory days as a war correspondent, Emma hides a secret that will turn the whole family upside down.
In close proximity, not much can stay hidden for long, and as revelations and long-held tensions come to light, nothing is more shocking than the unexpected guest who’s about to arrive…
My Thoughts: In alternating narratives, Seven Days of Us revealed the Birch family dynamics, showing us how each family member experienced the enforced togetherness.
Olivia, back home from saving lives in Liberia, was my favorite character. She was definitely not that thrilled to be in such close proximity to her family members, since she had been away and following her own path for years.
Emma, the matriarch, was definitely someone used to giving of herself, even to her own detriment. Her secret will change her life and her family going forward.
Phoebe, as the youngest and the only one of the offspring still living at home (at twenty-nine!) was an annoying, entitled brat, IMO. Everything all week long was all about her and her marriage plans. It was interesting to watch how things changed for her when her fiancé made a big and unexpected decision. She started to show a little bit of empathy for others.
Andrew, the patriarch, seemed oblivious to much that was going on, but when the surprise guest arrived, he began to look at life differently, even starting to assess some of his choices.
The setting of the dilapidated cottage surrounded by beautiful countryside brought me right into the lives of this English family, and I could imagine spending a week there in real life. The ending brought some good and some sad moments for the characters. There was something to savor in this story that felt so real, and earned 5 stars from me.
Most recent customer reviews
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