Thursday, 11 July 2013
The Good House by Ann Leary
review by Maryom
Hildy Good is a successful business woman, the top independent realtor in the area and she just likes a drink or two in the evening to relax. That's her version - and she's sticking to it! She's NOT an alcoholic - whatever is said by her interfering daughters, or the people at Hazleden re-hab centre, or the fellow townsfolk she meets at AA meetings. It's only when the glass or two turns into a bottle and more, when in a hungover state Hildy can't remember what happened the night before and when her reckless behaviour threatens her friends, that she begins to accept the truth...
Based on Ann Leary's personal experience, The Good House is a perceptive portrait of an alcoholic in denial. Although told in the first person from Hildy's point of view, the reader can see through her almost straight away. The irony is that Hildy claims to be able to 'read' others so well - partly through tricks taught her by a fortune-telling aunt, partly through instincts honed in years of nosing round the houses she sells. The only person she can't 'read' seems to be herself. Hildy is an interesting character - sixty years old, independent, on the brink of re-kindling an old romance - but her whole life-style is jeopardised by her alcoholism.
Although there's a background story in which Hildy's actions compromise the happiness and safety of others, this isn't really about plot as such, but Hildy's slow journey to self-discovery.
Maryom's review - 4 stars
Publisher - Atlantic Books
Genre - adult fiction
Buy The Good House from Amazon - currently only available as an e-book; to be released as a paperback in October 2013