Tangles. From the beginning of Anne Tyler’s novel, Noah’s Compass, protagonist Liam Pennywell, finds himself in one tangle or another as he tries to stay afloat. Liam, age 60, has been fired from his teaching job at a private school. He moves to a crummy apartment in a dicey neighborhood, and ends up in the hospital after someone breaks into his apartment and clocks him. Packed with messy relationships, small kindnesses, and the perfect blend of life’s misery and happiness, Noah’s Compass will captivate many readers, especially those who appreciate the richness of character that Tyler can deliver. Here’s my favorite line from Liam, “I just … don’t seem to have the hang of things, somehow. It’s as if I’ve never been entirely present in my own life.”
Rating: Three-star (Recommended)
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