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May 2018: Family Drama > A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler - 4 stars

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message 1: by Barbara M (new)

Barbara M (barbara-m) | 2300 comments **Cross-posted to Decathalon for May**
For some reason, this book often made me think of the very popular TV series This is Us, which I love. I think it is because of the four generations represented in the story and the switching back and forth in time periods (though not as quickly as the show).

The story starts out with Red and Abby in 1959 and moves forward at a pretty good clip, filling in bits and pieces of the history of the family, until we get to the period when Red and Abby are in their 70s and beginning to have problems. There are some health issues, Red and his heart, Abby and her wandering blank outs. Their 4 children and their families gather to help out and actually end up getting in each others way a bit. The only one unmarried is Denny, a sort of lovable, unreliable, black sheep. We learn his story and that of the two girls and younger brother Stem whose story is the last to be revealed.

The story then reverts to tell of how Red and Abby met. From there we learn how Red's parents, Linnie and Junior, met and survived the Depression. At the center of it all the house that Junior built for another family in one of the best parts of town. The family ended up owning the house and it plays a big role as the backdrop in the story.

I've read a few Anne Tyler's and have always enjoyed them. I'm lucky to have more to read still. She has memorable characters.


message 2: by Ellen (new)

Ellen | 2330 comments I nearly chose to do the audio with this one but I read it instead. Either way, I enjoyed it quite a bit. Your reference to "This is Us" is apt; one of my all time favorite shows.


message 3: by Susie (new)

Susie | 4488 comments I didn’t watch This Is Us but now I’m wishing I did! Surely it’s on Netflix or cable. Thanks!


message 4: by Barbara M (new)

Barbara M (barbara-m) | 2300 comments Susie wrote: "I didn’t watch This Is Us but now I’m wishing I did! Surely it’s on Netflix or cable. Thanks!"

I believe so. I hope you love it as much as I do.


message 5: by Amy (new)

Amy | 9377 comments Planning to use This Is Us for my upcoming course that I’m teaching in couples therapy. It’s brilliantly done.


message 6: by Joi (new)

Joi (missjoious) | 3834 comments This book hasn't really been on my radar- but your comparison to This is Us has definitely sparked my interest!!

Needed a new audiobook, and this was available to download now- so this may be my new Man Booker prize book!


message 7: by Jason (new)

Jason Oliver | 2105 comments Never seen This is Us. I enjoyed A Spool of Blue Thread. Great review. brought back parts of the book that had slipped from memory.


message 8: by Kristel (new)

Kristel (kristelh) | 699 comments I liked this one.


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