Book 30 – The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender

 

An easy light read, though I’m not sure what, if anything, the author was trying to say.

It’s a first person narrative story about Rose, a young girl growing up between the ages of 9 and 22 in a normal, American, nuclear family. Except that they are not really normal at all as they all turn out to have special “attributes” or skills which make their lives more complicated. This isn’t a fantasy-genre novel at all and the function of these attributes within the narrative is not to create amazing effects as such, but to serve as some kind of metaphor for how each character deals with the complex emotions of family relationships.

The ending was very banal. Rose’s brother couldn’t handle the real world, so he decided to become a chair, forever. I suppose this is some kind of metaphor for suicide. We don’t know why he couldn’t cope with life, he is simply descibed throughout the novel as a sullen, uncommunicative kid who is doted on by his Mum but doesn’t seem to appreciate anyone around him. And my reaction to that was mostly “meh”.

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