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Thursday, September 6, 2012

"Tigers In Red Weather" by Liza Klaussman ~ Neckbreaking Family Dysfunction!

Summary:  "Nick and her cousin, Helena, have grown up sharing sultry summer heat, sunbleached boat docks, and midnight gin parties on Martha's Vineyard in a glorious old family estate known as Tiger House.  In the days following the end of the Second World War, the world seems to offer itself up, and the two women are on the cusp of their 'real lives': Helena is off to Hollywood and a new marriage, while Nick is heading for a reunion with her own young husband, Hughes, about to return from the war.  Soon the gilt begins to crack.  Helena's husband is not the man he seemed to be, and Hughes has returned from the war distant, his inner light curtained over.  On the brink of the 1960s, back at Tiger House, Nick and Helena--with their children, Daisy and Ed--try to recapture that sense of possibility. But when Daisy and Ed discover the victim of a brutal murder, the intrusion of violence causes everything to unravel. The members of the family spin out of their prescribed orbits, secrets come to light, and nothing about their lives will ever be the same. Brilliantly told from five points of view, with a magical elegance and suspenseful dark longing, Tigers in Red Weather is an unforgettable debut novel from a writer of extraordinary insight and accomplishment"--

Particulars of the Book :
Published by:  Little, Brown & Co./Hachette Publishing
Pages:  336
Genre:  General Fiction
Available to purchase:  Barnes & Noble
Author:  Liza Klaussman


The Dame's Review:
Liza Klaussman literally swept me off my feet with her new book "Tigers In Red Weather."  She set me down in the post WWII setting, and completely enveloped me in her story of cold-hearted and isolated Nick, appropriately providing but "not all there emotionally" Hughes, Helena the wounded and wanting, Daisy the slightly dim daughter, and Ed, the holy terror.  This is a book I could reread just for the depth of the story and the psychological descriptiveness of it alone. 

These characters I mention above are so well thought out and so well presented, they left me thinking about them for days.  Their psychological make up is presented with such depth, they live and breathe within the story.  I truly think Liza knows these people...and knows them very well!  Perfectly fascinating characters.  They move from one emotion to another just as we all do in life.  I loved this honest element in Klaussman's writing.  There was nothing stagnant about her book.  As in real life, there were surprises around every corner which were moved and changed and acted upon by her characters for good and for bad.

At the center of this novel is a secondary story of a child warped and left to strange behaviors by the insanities of his parents; i.e., Ed, who is the only son of Helena.  Ed is a sinister figure who lends an overshadowing of doom to the plot.  This, and the emotionally off-centered nature of Nick, provides a sort of palpable anxiety about the story which I found extraordinary.  I love finding this sort of unusual thing happening as I read.  Liza Klaussman is a very talented writer.

Conversational novels are some of the best, I think.  This multi-way of presenting her story through all the characters was so engaging.  I was engrossed by the perspectives of each of them as the reader is asked to put together the whole picture.

I highly recommend this book.  Liza Klaussman is an author I will be waiting anxiously to hear from again.  She has a unique voice in Women Writers literature.  In my mind she is a writer akin to Joyce Carol Oates.  Can't say enough about her talents.  Klaussman's "Tiger in Red Weather" is an astonishing debut novel. This is a book for your permanent library.

5 stars     Deborah/TheBookishDame

3 comments:

bermudaonion

This is the second review I've read of this book and both of them were fabulous. I can't wait to read it!!

Deb

Kathy, This is on my "Best Books of the Year" list!

Chrissy Peebles

I LOVE how you put the summary in red. Cool! This looks like a fantastic read! And now I have to read it if it's on your best books of the year list! I always find the greatest books from you, Deb!

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