Lark and Termite by Jayne Anne Phillips

I’m on a roll: three good books in a row! Lark and Termite is the story of a family that’s much out-of-the-norm and beset by unusually burdensome challenges but that works despite the struggles. Lark and Termite are siblings (hlaf-siblings, since nothing is simple in the family) who live with their aunt following their mother’s abandonment and suicide, respectively. They live in a small West Virginia town where their aging and hard-working aunt is helped by her ex-lover who is also her employer and much more, as well as her neighbor and sometime admirer — or is it Lark he admires, in impeccable taste?

Little by little Termite’s father’s story is revealed as he dies in the Korean war — together with their mother’s complicated life. It could all be quite grim except that it is not: tough going, for sure, for all the main characters but there’s much love and hope as the complicated familial history is revealed. Very satisfying.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under New fiction

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s