Title: Anything Is Possible
Author: Elizabeth Strout
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: April 25, 2017
This collection of connected short stories is a follow-up to Elizabeth Stout’s bestseller My Name Is Lucy Barton. Each story focuses on different people from Lucy Barton’s hometown of Amgash, Illinois. Since it is a small town, everyone knows each other. The main characters in most of the stories are middle aged. They now have children and grandchildren of their own. They revisit things that happened in their youth, and how it has affected them in their adult lives. A couple of the women had mothers who had affairs and left their husbands. Some of the characters have lost parents. They also discover that a childhood friend was molested by her father. Though they had hard times growing up, most of them have become successful adults, who can give their children better upbringings than they had.
When I started reading this book, I realized it was a sequel to My Name is Lucy Barton. Since I hadn’t read that one, I was worried I wouldn’t understand this book. However, since it was a series of connected stories that don’t focus on what happened in the previous novel, I still enjoyed it.
I liked the way that each of the stories are connected. One character who was mentioned in the previous story would be the main focus of the next story.
The stories are good, but I didn’t find them very moving. They are all well written, but there are so many characters that it got overwhelming at times. They also have similar lives since they grew up in the same town, so I mixed up some of them.
This was a good book, though it wasn’t something I would normally read.