My Name is Lucy Barton – Elizabeth Strout

Another one I ordered from the library to take on holiday. Although it’s a hardback it’s quite slim and doesn’t feel like a lot of reading however it’s size is not indicative of it’s depth. It’s basically an introspective story of Lucy, mostly told during her time in hospital after she develops an illness following an appendix operation. Her estranged ¬†mother turns up at her bedside and over the next five days their conversation and Lucys own reminiscences tell of her childhood in poverty, her family, her attempts to leave her past but her discovery that it is part of who she is and her perception of herself as a writer. It’s a gentle read with the words that are not said being almost as important as those that are. The relationship between Lucy and her mother is really interesting, with a significant undercurrent of love despite it never being vocalised. Lucy is a likeable and realistic character, it’s well written and is the kind of book that sticks in your memory well after closing it’s pages.

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