A Canadian book blog: Publishing, marketing, books and technology from a Canadian perspective

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Book Review: Run by Ann Patchett

Run by Ann PatchettI first heard about Ann Patchett from my friend Jennifer who adored Patchett’s novel Bel Canto. I’ve never read the book but I feel that I intimately know the story and I’ve been anxious to read Patchett ever since. 

Today I finished Ann Patchett’s latest novel Run.

Run is stellar. And Ann Patchett is an author whose backlist I’m now going to seek out. In particular I want to read The Magician’s Assistant.

But back to Run. This is a beautiful book. The structure is an example of fine writing. Although the story follows chronological order there are nice loops back to the present. At no time do you feel like you know the whole story or where it’s going to go.

What’s the premise of the Run?

Bernadette Doyle is a loving mother who wishes to have more children and cannot. She and her husband adopt a black boy and a short time later they are contacted by the agency asking if they would take the older sibling. The birth mother wishes the boys be raised together. So Tip and Teddy join Mayor Doyle, Bernadette and Sullivan. Sadly Bernadette dies early of cancer, leaving the boys to grow up without their mother. The story picks up again when the boys are in university and one gets hit by a car.

Run is well constructed, the characters are interesting, and the dynamics between the characters are a powerful representation of the alliances and enemies that form in all families.

I first heard about this book when I stumbled across the book trailer for Run on Facebook.

I’m not a fan of most book trailers but I did like this one from Harper Collins. I liked that it used images and quotes from the book to convey the story. I also liked the simple piano soundtrack.

Watching the book trailer now, it’s even more powerful because the images make more sense and I can attribute the quotes to certain characters.

Watch the trailer.

Run by Ann Patchett (Harper Collins Canada) is definitely a top 10 book for the year.


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