Wednesday, 13 April 2011

The Uncoupling by Meg Wolitzer

Published by Riverhead Books an imprint of Penguin Group Canada

Eleanor Roosevelt High School has a new drama teacher, Fran Heller. Fran and her son Eli are new to Stellar Plains, New Jersey but with their newly painted colourful house and Fran's equally colourful personality, they are quickly making their mark. When Fran chooses the school play for the year, Lysistrata (in which women stop having sex with men in order to stop a war), strange things start to happen around the town. As if touched by magic, the women and girls in town are turning away from their partners with no idea as to why. Formerly healthy relationships turn sour as the women worry about this new development, the men feeling unwanted and equally as confused. Will life ever return to normal?

I wasn't expecting this book to be such a deep read. While the book blurb piqued my interest, the story line seemed pretty transparent and as such, I imagined I would breeze through this book in no time. Instead, I found myself reading a well developed tale, filled with characters I became quickly invested in, and enjoying the experience a great deal. Meg Wolitzer takes a serious and sensitive subject, blends it brilliantly with a dash of humour, a great deal of compassion, infinite honesty, and a sprinkle of surprise in order to bring us this wonderfully written novel.

I loved following the developments in each relationship, stealing a glimpse during their most intimate, turbulent, and vulnerable moments. It's impossible to read this book and not feel an empathy with one, if not many of the characters within. The author teases and tugs at the full range of emotions in the reader which I found quite exhilarating. That said, I still, weeks after reading this, have trouble trying to express fully what I thought of it. It's a book that is difficult to really describe as it's pretty different from anything else I have read but I did enjoy reading it and found myself mulling over the content in-between reading sessions. It's also a book that I feel would be great to re-read. I plan on reading it again this summer, without my reviewing cap on, so that I may savour it more completely. I also plan on obtaining a copy of Lysistrata and other works by Aristophanes.

It's definitely worth a look and you can see an excerpt here

Author's website: http://megwolitzer.com/

1 comment:

Rebecca Kiel said...

Thanks for including the excerpt. There are many books that come highly recommended, but if I don't like the voice or style, I don't really want to invest in the whole book. This is helpful!