Hobbies, Self-Care, Surly's Reading List

40 Books by 40 – We Are Water by Wally Lamb

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Book number 18 (almost halfway!) in my reading goal is We are Water by Wally Lamb. You may know Wally Lamb from his previous works: She’s Come Undone, I Know This Much is True, and The Hour I First Believed. My all-time favorite book is She’s Come Undone. If you have not read it, you must!!! It was one of Oprah’s Book Club selections years ago which put it on the map. It’s a given since She’s Come Undone is my favorite book, that I will read all of Lamb’s works. We Are Water was published in 2013, and I have been waiting patiently for the library’s copy to become available. I was so excited to read it, and this book does not disappoint.

We Are Water is the story of the Oh family from Three Rivers, Connecticut. Annie, her husband Orion, and their 3 children’s world is rocked when the couple gets divorced after 27 years of marriage. Annie has chosen to remarry Viveca, in Connecticut where gay marriage has recently become legal. As the wedding approaches Annie, as well as other members of the family, are forced to face their painful past which is littered with death, heartache, abuse, and secrets. Secrets consume this family. What is the exact nature of Annie’s past? What is the history of the paintings discovered on the Oh property? What is the real reason for Orion losing his job? We Are Water is an intense novel with layers of history, family, and again, secrets.

We Are Water is an intense novel with layers of history, family, and secrets.

We Are Water is told from alternating points of view, Annie, Orion, the kids, as well as people from the past. Lamb leaves you hanging several times, as the storyline shifts to another character, and we have to wait to find out what happens next. These are a couple of reasons why I enjoyed this book so much. The character voices are so vivid, honest, and vulnerable that you want everyone in the family to be happy. The novel is full of drama and some super intense and graphic moments when aspects of the past are remembered in the current day. Some moments of suspense keep you turning the pages and keep you up past your bedtime!!

What was your favorite summer read this year?

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