Author Drouillard tells the history of her family in recent generations through the lives of her seven aunts, four on her mother’s side and three on her father’s.
I’ve always been interested in family histories, because no two are the same – that, and that there are generally a lot of secrets to uncover and I am a nosy sort of person. The fact that Seven Aunts is so wholeheartedly focused on the lives of the women in the family, tracing their parallels and divergences, made it especially interesting to me.
The author clearly loves her aunts very much, and the care and sympathy with which she writes about them. I like how she charted all the ways their lives touched and entangled, and how they were all shaped in different ways by their parents and their place within the family. I also liked the conversational tone of the writing, as though the author was relating the stories to another family member.
However, I found that the writing sometimes rambled, and there was often too much between the lines that was not said outright. I also thought some of the aunts got overshadowed by the broader family stories that were related in their chapters, eating up the word count needed to get to know them, so that I felt some chapters were more focused on the aunt in question than others.
Overall an interesting read that relates the stories of ordinary women leading quietly powerful lives.
Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley. This is my honest and voluntary review.