This book is an ok book. The story itself is about a woman who comes from an abusive past meeting back up with her mother and her family for the first time in a long time on a French estate. There’s quiet drama and unspoken things etc etc.
For me, one of the things this book is truly about is claustrophobia. Here we have this giant French estate and these intermixed families coming from all over the world, but the book itself is so narrowly focused that it feels like it’s closing in on them. The strength, then, of this writing is in its ability to really close off those spaces. The world of this book is so so so small, even though it literally encapsulates everything possible.
If you saw the movie The VVitch you already got a version of this idea in the sense of how closed off from the rest of the world the family is once they lose their connections to an already impossibly small world that is closed off.
So in this novel then, the way abuse cuts people off from their sense of a wider world really comes into play. The way that grief and sorrow can do the same also does.
Even the very object of the book itself feels this way. This book was a small 4inch by 4inch square of a book barely 120 pages and it too felt like it was trapping in me within these closed spaces. I feel like these experiences do make or break the book.