The Making of Us
London, Random, 2011, 390p
I think I am still a little hungover from reading William Boyd's Any Human Heart, meaning I have been unable to settle into any other novel since I finished his masterpiece. So I went in search of something a little more simple, to get my mind back in the game, and was recommended a bit of Lisa Jewell.
In various places across London, Dean, Robyn and Lydia know something is missing from their lives. Young Dean has just become a father, but has lost his girlfriend in childbirth, and he does not feel strong enough to give his daughter all the love and attention she needs. Robyn has just moved in with her boyfriend, but isn't feeling as awesome as she usually does. Lydia never had any family, and is now struggling to be happy with the fact her best friend is starting one of her own. The Making of Us is about these relationships between parents and children, brothers and sisters. And, in classic popular literature fashion, the three protagonists are all brought together by a mysterious and handsome French man.
I read and loved Lisa Jewell when I was a teenager - I remember recommending Ralph's Party to everyone I knew, though now I cannot even recall what it was about! With The Making of Us, I found myself wanting to edit it - making cuts to long unnecessary paragraphs. But still, I like her style and tone - the plots are not too challenging, but the stories and characters are likeable, so you find yourself wanting things to end well.
Fingers crossed this has cured my William Boyd hangover.