A review by Janelle Van Dalsem
Giving a brief review of books I love is like asking asking an Historian to give you the history of Russia in a nutshell…there are so many important details that it is nearly impossible to do the book (or Russia) justice simply by giving the main events.
That being said, here is a brief review of a book I love:
The Adults is one of the best contemporary books I’ve read. I tend to be drawn more to the classic Gothic pieces (anything by Poe or Hawthorne, Phantom of the Opera) or wonderfully poetic contemporary literature (Toni Morrison or Sandra Cisneros). Alison Espach, however, is a contemporary writer who maintains originality in its purest form: without trying. Browsing through books written in the past 10 years feels a lot like searching for a classic in a used bookstore. There is a lot of crap. Everyone is either too quirky, too flowery, too emotional, or riding on the coattails of a certain author whose books were written over 200 years ago…but Espach was wonderful. She’s brutally honest about life in mid-90s suburbia in a way that makes you feel like you were there (and for those of you that were, well then it’s like reading a book about yourself!). As cliché as it may sound, The Adults is like a breath of fresh air amongst the overwhelming wave of unemotional and overly emotion literature lining the shelves of bookstores. Espach makes great use of words without overusing them, and yet is far from the sparse and straightforward writing of Hemingway. This is definitely a must-read!