Leavitt's assured and convincing second novel, after The Lost Language of Cranes , follows the four members of the Cooper family through the mother's illness and death. Louise has lived with lymphatic cancer for a long time, all through Danny and April's growing-up years in northern California; now April's successful singing career has made her a feminist leader, and Danny practices law in New York. While focusing primarily on Danny and the impact of his family connections on his long-term relationship with Walt, another lawyer with whom he lives in New Jersey, Leavitt gives rounded, affectionate treatment to the others as well: Louise, whose bitter present includes cherished secrets of a wild past; Nat, who finds solace for dashed dreams with his mistress; April, whose bisexuality is at odds with her feminism; and even Walt, who scours the gay computer networks and thinks about leaving Danny. In understated, perfectly targeted prose, Leavitt illuminates the ordinariness of his characters, giving them and their sorrows and joys a long-lasting afterglow. 50,000 first printing; author tour. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1989 Release date: 01/01/1989 Genre: Fiction
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