Tuesday, May 11, 2010

MEN AND DOGS by Katie Crouch (2010)

Since I enjoyed Katie Crouch's debut novel so much, I was delighted to find her new one on the shelves at my local library.

Hannah Legare is a 30-something entrepreneur who built a hugely successful business shilling high-end sex toys with her equally clever husband Jon in San Francisco. Due to her obsessive nature, Hannah is unable to let go of her belief that her father simply disappeared two decades previous, instead of the community knowledge that he drowned and the family dog survived. As she loses perspective on her own life, Hannah makes a series of bad decisions that lead to a frightening accident that forces her to take refuge back in Charleston where she's monitored by her mother, brother and stepfather.

Offering up antic and flawed characters in Hannah and her patrician South Carolinian family (gay brother Palmer, strong-willed mother Daisy and stepfather Dewitt), Crouch manages to provide a story that is as humorous as it is tender as she contemplates big questions of family, loyalty and faith.

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