Overview from Barnes and Nobel:
A startling and tender portrait of one family’s struggle to make peace with their son’s death
An ingeniously layered narrative, told over the course of one week, Eddie Joyce’s debut novel masterfully depicts an Italian-Irish American family on Staten Island and their complicated emotional history. Ten years after the loss of Bobby—the Amendola family’s youngest son—everyone is still struggling to recover from the firefighter’s unexpected death. Bobby’s mother, Gail; his widow, Tina; his older brothers Peter, the corporate lawyer, and Franky, the misfit; and his father, Michael, have all dealt with their grief in different ways. But as the family gathers together for Bobby Jr.’s birthday party, they must each find a way to accept a new man in Tina’s life while reconciling their feelings for their lost loved one.In unflinching but lyrical prose, Joyce shows us one mother’s struggle to keep her family together and preserve the memory of her son. Following Gail as she moves from the corner offices of white-shoe Manhattan law firms to the blue-collar gin mills of the outer boroughs, Small Mercies reveals a different New York, one that exists in the hearts and minds of its inhabitants.Presented through multiple points of view, Small Mercies explores the conflicts and deep attachments that exist within families. Heart-wrenching and profoundly relatable, Joyce’s debut is a love letter to Staten Island and a deeply affecting portrait of an American family.
This was a great book from a first time author. I loved it! It tells the story of how one Staten Island family is affected for years after their fire-fighter son was killed during 9-11. The characters were well developed. The story was good. It is happy and sad at the same time. The only thing I can find to complain about is the excessive number of times the word F*** is used. Now I tell you I am not a prude. I have been known to drop the bomb a time or two in my life. (Okay that might be an under-exaggeration). But I have never found it necessary, in either books or movies, to over use the word to tell the story. Although this might well be the way an Italian-Irish family talks. I enjoyed the book. I will look for other books by this outstanding author.
Now I am on to reading The Shack by William Paul Young. Have you heard about this book?