Tobias Wolff's literary gifts are many-- he peels layer after layer off his characters' psyches. And he does so with warmth and wit.

Structurally, the novel is flawed. It starts well, builds nicely to climax and then, somehow gets weird. The writing style changes. The voice changes. Readers are tossed into an alternate universe.

In the final few pages, there is some literary triage, but the damage is already done.

Turns out this novel began as three short stories. I guess two melded seamlessly and the other did not.

susanchyn's rating:
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