A dramatic, ambitious first novel of a Midwestern family's self-destruction and repairMeet the Brunsons of Downers Grove, Illinois: Henry, the once-magical father, whose fear of aging and endangered career lead him to the nightclubs of Chicago's Viagra Triangle; his wife Julie, who struggles to reclaim her life with a bottle of Zoloft and dreams of her youthful independence; Charlie, the golden-boy son, who leaves the lucrative job his father arranged to serve in Afghanistan-and returns angry, damaged, and uncertain of his place in the world; and Barkley, the bumbling youngest, an aspiring writer of geeky science fiction stories who is interviewing for his first job at a forbidding Catholic high school. When Henry's health abruptly declines, he tries to return to the home and the life he had dominated. But his family-once totally dependent on his love, physical strength, and income-no longer needs him. As Julie, Charlie, and Barkley begin to find their ways forward, Henry tries desperately to bring them back together. In the end, each one will arrive at a new understanding of what family can-and cannot-be.Unusually assured and perceptive, combining narrative drive with humor, insight, and powerful family dynamics, A Good Family is a memorable debut.
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