Tuesday, April 01, 2014

The Burgess Boys

by Elizabeth Strout

The Burgess boys, Jim and Bob, could not wait to leave their hometown of Shirley Falls, Maine.  They escaped to New York, where they tried to forget their past.  They desperately tried to forget that freak accident that killed their father.

Jim is now a successful corporate lawyer, and sad-sack Bob is a Legal Aid attorney.  It's a good thing that they're lawyers because their nephew, Zach, is going to need all of the legal help that he can get.

The Burgess boys will return to Shirley Falls to help their sister and her son in their time of need.  And their return to their hometown will bring back lots of old feelings, as well as a shocking revelation between brothers.

I wasn't sure how good this would be, especially after reading that great Elinor Lipman novel.  The Burgess Boys definitely held its own.  This is a great story with an interesting setting and characters.  I am amazed by Strout's ability to tell a story. 

And, if the characters weren't all so repulsive, I'd love this novel even more.


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