Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Map of True Places

A few days ago I did a post that came on because of a book I read. Well.. this is the book I read. And I suggest you do too because it was really quite good.

The Map of True Places by Brunonia Barry
The Map of True Places: A Novel
A respected Boston psychotherapist, Zee Finch has come a long way from a motherless childhood spent stealing boats. But the actions of a patient throw Zee into emotional chaos and take her back to places she thought she'd left behind. What starts as a brief visit home to Salem begins a larger journey. Suddenly having to care for her ailing father after his longtime companion moves out, Zee must come to terms with a strained and awkward relationship that has always been marked by half-truths and haunted by the untimely death of her mother. Overwhelmed by her new role, Zee must destroy the existing map of her life and chart a new course- one that will guide her not only into her future but into her past as well.

So.. what can I say. First off, the description doesn't really describe the book very well at all. Sure, all of these things happen throughout, but there are so many more things that happen. Zee is a frustratingly complex character and I found myself feeling bad for her but then at the same time wanting to smack her. I have a hard time with people who play the "I had a hard life/past/whatever so it impacts my current life" card. I hate it. I really dislike it. I had a shit alcoholic, drug addicted father and I have gone through some really heinous and awful things but you don't see me all sad face up in here. No. Basically, I have a problem with people who feel sorry for themselves. Get over it.

Anyways. Let's talk about this book again. I really liked how the author walked us through all of the obstacles Zee is up against: a father dying of Parkinson's that is much more progressed than she thought, her father's companion who just wants to be back into the fold but since dad is slipping into Alzheimer's at the same time it's not working out so well, her patient kills herself which forces her to reconcile her mother's suicide, her questioning her abilities in her career, an engagement that goes to hell, a hot new guy coming into the picture, etc. Seriously. It's a LOT of stuff and this poor chick has it all at once.

What I loved about the book is that once all the groundwork was laid out, you knew the characters and you knew key pieces of their story... Brunonia Barry weaves it together. It goes from a "find yourself and life is good" story to a potential murder/mystery/romance story and then it wraps it up with the ending you hoped for. At least for me.

It was a fascinating read. It makes you question the little things you let get into the way of relationships and if they are really worth it. In the end.. we all die. And is it worth being unhappy, trying to please others, holding grudges, etc? No. It really isn't. So while I thought I'd have a hard time getting into it when I first started, I found myself devouring this book.

Check out the other bloggers on this book tour HERE, check out the author's website HERE. Also, Brunonia is going to be at a few upcoming events. If she's in your area- stop by and tell her you saw her book featured on a blog tour!

Thursday, March 31st, 7:00 PM: Discussion & signing; RJ JULIA BOOKSELLERS; Madison, CT
Friday, April 1st, 12:30 PM: Author luncheon/signing; BANK SQUARE BOOKS; Mystic, CT 06355
Saturday, April 2nd, 7:00 PM: Discussion & signing; NORTHSHIRE BOOKSTORE; Manchester Center, VT
Thursday, April 7th, 6:30 PM; The SPIRIT OF 76 BOOKSHOP; Marblehead, MA
Wednesday, April 27th, 7:00 PM: Book club discussion; MORSE LIBRARY; Natick, MA
Friday-Saturday, April 29th-April 30th: NEWBURYPORT LITERARY FESTIVAL; Newburyport, MA
Thursday, May 5th, Time TBD: Women’s Lunch Place Boston, BOSTON, MA
Saturday, June 4th, 1:00 PM: Reading & signing; BAYSWATER BOOKS; Center Harbor, NH

And finally, Book Club Girl on Air Show will have Brunonia and talk about the book Wednesday, April 20th, 7 pm EST and you would go HERE to listen to that.


Jandy xx said...

Ive been a shit bloggy buddy of late, sorry mate, you know i love ya guts out though hey :(

Anonymous said...

I love that this book really made you think. I just hopped over and read your post about grudges and I couldn't agree more. My mom always taught us to be the peacemakers and she modeled that behavior within her own family. I try to do the same thing with my own family today, and according to my husband I do a good job of it. :)

Don't you love it when a book brings up important topics?! I'm thinking this would be a fantastic book club pick ...

Thanks for being on the tour.

Anonymous said...

Stop reading. No kidding- keep reading. You just read too fast for me to keep up! Adding this one to my list too!