This book passed the rarest of tests: I often bring a book somewhere in case I have a wait or a gap of time and have a chance to read. I’ve done it since childhood, but the habit doesn’t really make sense anymore. I have an almost 3 year old who needs constantly, never-ending attention, intervention, corralling, chasing, and supervision. On the rare occasions that I do actually have a second in public, it’s 100,000,000x easier to just browse Facebook on my phone or something.
Generally Liane Moriarty books are the only ones that I can drop into so quickly that it’s worth it to open in public knowing I’ll maybe get a paragraph in, and that are interesting enough to bother. I took this book on vacation with me – our first as a family, and I thought as I packed it, “You’re going to laugh at yourself when you unpack this next week without ever having read a single page.”
Nope! I read it on the plane. I read it on the layover while my husband and kid played with a beach ball. I read it on the other plane. I read it in bed in our stateroom. I read it on the deck of the ship. I made up excuses to run little errands (“I’ll go up to deck 11 and bring us all some drinks – no, it’s okay, you guys stay here and relax!” so I could read it while I walked down the halls. I freaking loved this book.
Basically, the adult Plumb children are all hot messes. They’re supposed to get an inheritance soon but their mother uses it to bail their eff-up brother Leo out of a horrific mess that is entirely of his own making. All of them have crises that they brought on themselves and desperately need the money (well, most of them) but Leo’s isn’t even a little sympathetic. Their problems unfold and they try to convince Leo to repay his part of the inheritance. That’s pretty much it. It really shot a hole in every time I’ve said that I didn’t like a book because it didn’t have anyone to root for. Pretty much every character is an asshole, but the development of those assholes – and even the people around them who didn’t really even have to be there – and the brilliant storytelling made every single page enjoyable. I can’t wait to see what Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney writes next.