Commonwealth explores the complicated relationships of the Keating and Cousins families after they’re joined by infidelity, marriage, and divorce.
This book is more of a study of life rather than a novel. Instead of a protagonist, the story follows various members of a highly dysfunctional family. They lie to each other, cheat on each other, and abuse each other on various levels. Sometimes they are seeking personal gain, other times times they are seeking someone else’s downfall. It doesn’t really matter, because rather than showing how a blended family can unite and succeed, Patchett chose to show how a blended family can destroy (and enjoy) tearing itself apart from the inside out.
The plot was hard to follow. Events were uncovered out of order and the frequent flashbacks made the flow of the book choppy. The artistic decision to us a shifting POV didn’t help the cohesiveness of the story.
I know that this book received wonderful reviews, but it wasn’t for me.
Ann Patchett is a beautiful writer though, so if she’s written a more traditional novel, I’d love to read it!