- Fizzy Thoughts: Any Bitter Thing

Any Bitter Thing

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Any Bitter Thing
Monica Wood
2005
335 pages

While out jogging one night, Lizzy Mitchell is the victim of a hit and run. As she lies unconscious in the hospital she believes her deceased uncle, Father Mike, visits her. After she was orphaned at a young age, Father Mike (who is a Catholic priest) took in Lizzy and cared for her until she was nine, at which point she is sent away to her aunt’s house. Father Mike dies shortly thereafter.
After his mystical visit in the hospital, Lizzy begins to reflect more on her childhood. The book easily moves between the past and the present, the voices of Lizzy and Father Mike. Intertwined with Lizzy’s search to understand the past is her search to reclaim her marriage and ultimately, herself.
This sounds like a depressing book, but it really isn’t. Of course, it isn’t exactly jump up and dance a jig material, either, but it’s a quiet, reflective book that focuses on relationships…those between friends, family, and community.
One of the things I liked most about this book is how rooted in the everyday it is. The characters could easily be your neighbors; they are that normal and well crafted. This is not book about unusual magical occurrences (although I like those books, too). Granted, the hit and run isn’t ordinary, and being raised by a Catholic priest is a little out of the ordinary, but the actions and reactions of everyone seem very grounded in reality and everyday.There is also a twist about 2/3 of the way through that came as a surprise and got me to thinking even more about what was going on. And that’s all I’m gonna say ‘bout that.

3 comment(s):

bkclubcare said...

This sounds good. I like your informal review style. Happy New Year!

sognatrice said...

Getting added to my wishlist. Thanks :)

LisaMM said...

Let me know when you come across some "jump up and dance a jig" material, because I'd enjoy a book like that! LOL

In a real sense, people who have read good literature have lived more than people who cannot or will not read. It is not true that we have only one life to live; if we can read, we can live as many more lives and as many kinds of lives as we wish. ~S.I. Hayakawa

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
~St. Augustine

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.
~Mark Twain

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