Fly Away Home

Jennifer Weiner, Author
Jennifer Weiner, Atria, $26.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-7432-9427-0
Reviewed on: 06/28/2010
Release date: 07/01/2010
Hardcover - 978-1-84739-026-4
Compact Disc - 978-1-4423-1684-3
Ebook - 416 pages - 978-0-85720-068-6
Hardcover - 401 pages - 978-0-85720-144-7
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4423-1687-4
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4561-1490-9
Ebook - 416 pages - 978-1-4391-8396-0
Hardcover - 527 pages - 978-1-60285-813-8
Hardcover - 978-1-84983-523-7
Paperback - 401 pages
Paperback - 401 pages - 978-1-84739-025-7
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4423-1685-0
Compact Disc - 978-1-4423-1686-7
Compact Disc - 5 pages - 978-1-4423-5019-9
Hardcover - 512 pages - 978-1-4458-5484-7
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Weiner (Best Friends Forever) weaves a forgettable family drama with three weakly connected storylines: mother Sylvie Woodruff long ago sacrificed herself to become the perfect politician's wife, but the revelation of her husband's infidelity sends her off to reconnect with her old self. Her daughters aren't faring any better: recovering addict Lizzie is pursuing an interest in photography, but a childhood incident continues to trouble her; and dutiful older daughter Diana, an ER doctor, is escaping her blandly offensive husband via her own affair. The three women's crises function in parallel, and Weiner is unable to keep the narrative tension going when she hops from one character to another, largely because their issues are so tidily resolved and the women are never in real emotional danger—Sylvie's husband's affair is a "one-day story," Lizzie's narcotic slip is to take a couple of Advil PM (and an apology resolves the unresolved past), and the breakdown of Diana's marriage is dispatched as easily as Diana making a resolution to change her life. The lack of conflict and strong characters, and the heavy dose of brand names and ripped-from-the-headlines references, make this disappointingly disposable. (July)
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