Annie's Reviews > The Hole We're in

The Hole We're in by Gabrielle Zevin
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Jan 27, 2011

did not like it
bookshelves: fiction
Read in January, 2011

I think Gabrielle is a great writer and there was a great story in this book populated with compelling characters; I just wish it wasn’t buried underneath the multitude of curse words on the pages. This book was enthralling but a real downer of a story. It is about the Pomeroy family, Roger, the father and a fanatical seventh day adventist, George his long-suffering wife, Victor, the outcast son because he went to Yale and not a religious college, Helen, a daughter with mountains of credit card debt and finally, Patsy, who takes the brunt of most of her parents hypocritical sins, eventually joining the military. The part that really bothered me about his book was that her parents wouldn’t let her date a black football player at her high school and the mother let the father think that Patsy had gotten an abortion, when really it was her. Everything falls apart for this group, with the exception of Victor and Patsy. Helen and Victor really take a backseat to the story, for half of the book, Patsy is the main character and driving force plot wise. I despised the father, the mother and rooted for Patsy but was disappointed to see her life turn out the way it did and that the cycle of pregnancy/abortion continued with her daughter. I heard this was a searing look at our “recession era” time, and with the book cover styled to look like a credit card, there was plenty of financial woes for the family members, but I felt the book raised many more issues than just that and it wasn’t necessarily the focus. It felt like too much crammed into one book, I would have enjoyed hearing the story from some of the characters that didn’t get many pages (Victor, Helen, more George). The story often jumped ten years into the future and not in the right places.

Favorite Quote:
Sometimes she suspected that something inside her was a bit broken. She related to documentaries she had seen about autistic people. She knew how a person was supposed to react to things-love, for instance, or excitement or delight and could put the appropriate show of those feelings, but she never felt any of them. The only emotion she truly experienced was mild annoyance, and she felt that most all the time.
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