9780618839322 (hc), 0618839321 (hc)
"An Eamon Dolan book."
Jay, one of seven living children, contemplates his mother's influence on the family and his life, as he struggles with her disappointment in him and suspects she may have sabotaged a budding relationship.
A richly detailed, darkly hilarious novel of a family held together and torn apart by its narcissistic matriarch. To those in her Cape Cod town, Mother is an exemplar of piety, frugality, and hard work. To her husband and seven children, she is the selfish, petty tyrant of Mother Land. She excels at playing her offspring against each other. Her favorite, Angela, died in childbirth; only Angela really understands her, she tells the others. The others include the officious lawyer, Fred; the uproarious professor, Floyd; a pair of inseparable sisters whose devotion to Mother has consumed their lives; and JP, the narrator, a successful writer whose work she disparages. As she lives well past the age of 100, her brood struggles with and among themselves to shed her viselike hold on them.