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Formats
Paperback Book Details
  • 12/2012
  • 9781480100060
  • 262 pages
  • $10.98
Ebook Details
  • 10/2012
  • B009Z4WCF8
  • 276 pages
  • $2.99
Jess Riley
Author
All the Lonely People
Jess Riley, author
After losing her beloved mother to cancer, 37-year-old Jaime Collins must confront the ugly fact that she and her siblings don't actually like one another. At all. Fueled by grief and an epic argument at Thanksgiving dinner, Jaime decides to divorce her brother and sister and posts an ad on Craigslist for a new family with whom to share Christmas dinner. What happens next is a heartwarming, funny, and surprising journey to forgiveness and healing. Is blood really thicker than water? What makes a family? And how far do we have to go to find our way back home again? Dedicated to anyone who has ever wanted to unfriend a relative on Facebook, All the Lonely People is about family: those you make ... and those you make peace with. Perfect for fans of Tina Fey, Jennifer Weiner, Nick Hornby, and Jen Lancaster, this wry, touching novel from the author of Driving Sideways follows a cast of five endearing misfits who form a family of choice to try and make sense of their families of origin.
Reviews
Riley (Mandatory Release) creates a standout character in the sad, funny, irreverent Jaime Collins, who posts an online ad for a replacement family with which to share Christmas. Jaime’s Thanksgiving at her brother’s house was a disaster. Her mother had recently died of ovarian cancer; her father has been absent for decades; and her brother Clint’s “kinder moments have become about as rare and real as Yeti sightings.” Their sister Gwen wasn’t even present—she has always been an ice queen—and the holiday finally fails when Clint orders Jaime from his home. Jaime doesn’t feel quite like she and her husband, Erik, comprise a proper family because they have no children, and so she places an online ad seeking lonely people who wish to share Christmas dinner. The responses are mixed, but she chooses a diverse group of four to share the holiday meal at a local restaurant: the widow Evelyn; the transgender Chris; Paul, “nuttier than your Uncle Pete and entertaining as hell”; and grad student Alyssa. Though they range in age and lifestyle, they get along. The pain of Jaime’s losses is profound, but this comic tragedy is saturated with humor, which ranges from slapstick to acerbically witty. Riley’s page-turner is equally touching and laugh-out-loud funny. (BookLife)
Booklist

When her mother dies of cancer, Jaime tries to keep her family intact. Trouble is, they sure put the funk in dysfunctional—her brother is a self-centered blowhard; her sister is an ice queen who has distanced herself emotionally and physically; and they haven’t seen their father since he left the family when they were just kids. Jaime’s husband, Erik, doesn’t have it much better; his father is sitting in a nursing home and doesn’t know who Erik is. After a disastrous Thanksgiving dinner, Jaime decides to advertise on Craigslist for a new family for the holidays. She gets Chris, a pre-op transsexual; Evelyn, a sweet and lonely senior citizen; Paul, who is obsessed with his dachshunds and with the Kiss Army; and Alyssa, a suicidal grad student. The motley crew quickly becomes involved in each other’s lives, lending support and unwavering friendship over the next year’s worth of crises. Riley displays the same gift for creating realistic characters and laugh-out-loud moments as she did in Driving Sideways (2008). Women’s-fiction fans and those who love to compare their own dysfunctional families will get a big kick out of this novel.

--Rebecca Vnuk

Formats
Paperback Book Details
  • 12/2012
  • 9781480100060
  • 262 pages
  • $10.98
Ebook Details
  • 10/2012
  • B009Z4WCF8
  • 276 pages
  • $2.99

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