Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Promised World by Lisa Tucker

Flap copy from ARC:
On a March afternoon, while Lila Cole is working in her quiet office, her twin brother, Billym points an unloaded rifle out of a hotel window across from an elementary school, closing down a city block. 'Suicide by police' was obviously Billy's intended result, but the aftermath of his death brings shock after shock for Lila when she discovers her twin- the person she thought she was closert to than anyone in the world- was not only estranged from his wife, but also charged with endangering the life of his middle child and namesake, eight-year-old William.

This gripping tale of family secrets and shattered lives is both tragic and redemptive. When Billy commits suicide, his fraternal Lila is left shattered. Unable to understand Billy's actions or to piece together the fractured pieces of her childhood without his help, Lila starts to separate from her life trying to piece together what happened in his. Meanwhile Billy's wife Ashley and Lila's husband Patrick dance around the edges of the picture, reintroducing Lila's mother Barbara to the family with almost tragic results.

Tucker is a masterful storyteller and this heartbreaking novel stretches those skills to the limits. I found the story haunting, and am still thinking about the revealed truths weeks later. Though the ending drifted toward the unbelievable, it didn't cross over the edge which could have ruined this wonderful novel. This novel pushes at the definitions of truth and memory, and explores the blurry lines that sometimes mask the two.

Highly recommended- this wonderful novel with stay with you long after you have finished reading.

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