Anne Tyler books - I always find the covers so appealing. I read the back synopsis and think to myself "Maybe this time...." and so I get sucked in. In other words, for me, Anne Tyler's work is a lot like a food allergy. The strawberries look red and delicious and I think , "Maybe this time I won't break out in terrible hives" but I always do. Same principal here. I have read three books by Anne Tyler - they all leave me with the same taste in my mouth - flat and unsatisfied. This book was no exception and this time, I'm putting it down in writing - This is my LAST book of hers. The definition of Insanity is doing the same thing expecting a different result, and I have been insane. No longer. This book cured me once and for all.
There wasn't a single character that I related to. They were all two dimensional constructs. The main part of the story for me is where Red's parents are killed by the train and Red and his wife ( she's so strong I character that I can't even remember her name now...) discuss their philosophy of death. Red wants it to be quick and the wife wants to see how it all turns out - the long goodbye. Tyler's plot lines are like that in this book - some go on forever even though you wish desperately that they would end and others just drop off completely without any resolution.
I read to learn new things, experience new things, escape reality for a little while. Tyler's books are like having a root canal. Never again.