Sunday, February 14, 2010

We Are All Welcome Here, by Elizabeth Berg

I am quite sure that I've read several books by Elizabeth Berg, but I can't for the life of me remember them! I looked at the author's own synopses, and found that only one really rang a bell. This does not in any way discount the pleasure of reading her novels; in fact I'm pleased that I get to read them for the first time all over again. This is more comfort reading for me - although the stories are often rife with illness, abuse and heartbreak, they are also somehow uplifting and give me a feeling of comfort.

We Are All Welcome Here is told from the perspective of a somewhat bratty 13 year old who lives with her disabled mother and their prickly caretaker. I loved that all of the characters are sort of cranky and annoying, particularly Diana, the daughter, and Peacie, the housekeeper/nurse/nanny. They seemed very real to me. The novel encompasses all kinds of issues, dwelling mainly on bigotry of various kinds and motherhood in all its complexity. I enjoyed it thoroughly and completely forgive the few improbable events.

Where I heard about this book
: I found it when seeking comfort literature at the library.

What I thought of this book
: Very satisfying. 4 stars.

What this book is about
: A thirteen year old girl who lives with her quadriplegic mother, their relationship with each other and with their caretaker. Set in the sixties, it contains racism, civil rights strife, sexism, romantic yearning, classism, improbable romance... it's actually downright brimming with issues!

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