Gale excels at writing about families and this book is no exception. The best writing in the book is about Frances, who in the present-day narrative is struggling with early onset Alzheimer’s. The tangled, fearful, confused and frighteningly lucid aspects of this disease are expertly rendered, with Frances’ occasional outbursts providing Gale with the opportunity to provide an uncensored perspective on the intrigue at the heart of this dysfunctional family. Similarly Gale’s treatment of ethical questions and sexual morality, refracted as it is through a lens of gay sensibility, is startling in showing how families will absorb even the most treacherous acts.

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