Family and Other Accidents: A Novel

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Crown/Archetype, Apr 4, 2006 - Fiction - 288 pages
7 Reviews
Separated by a decade and 200 points on their SAT scores, Jack and Connor Reed have a life in the Cleveland suburbs held together by spit and Chinese takeout. With his self-absorbed, over-the-hill parents dead by his twenty-fifth birthday, Jack has abandoned his own plans and returned to his parents’ house where he works marathon hours at his late father’s law firm, beds young paralegals, and throws money and advice at his teenage brother. Connor meanwhile wants nothing more than to leave the Midwest, start a family early, and do everything the way his parents didn’t. But over the years, through the car crashes and bad breakups, the illnesses and illicit affairs, both realize that while circumstances are sometimes beyond control, there are always choices to be made.

Family and Other Accidents tells the story of these brothers from their viewpoints as well as from those of their girlfriends, wives, and children. It is a story of what it means to be a family, to love unconditionally in the face of confusion, anger, and regret. Shari Goldhagen’s debut is a finely nuanced, universally resonant portrait of the ties, however strange or awkward, that bind families together through the decades.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - oldblack - LibraryThing

I reckon this is a pretty good piece of writing. OK, its context is very much middle class America in modern times, and it doesn't attempt to say anything about any other situation, so that might be ... Read full review


User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

This sharply realistic debut novel traces the lives of Jack and Connor Reed, brothers growing up in Shaker Heights, Ohio. The two are orphaned when Jack is a fledgling lawyer of 25 and Connor a shy ... Read full review


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Page 9 - Kathy, I'm lost,' I said, Though I knew she was sleeping. 'I'm empty and aching and I don't know why.

About the author (2006)

Shari Goldhagen holds an MFA from Ohio State and a journalism degree from Northwestern. A fellow of both Yaddo and MacDowell, she currently lives in New York City, where she has stalked celebrities for magazines, including The National Enquirer, Life & Style, and Celebrity Living.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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