My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Sons of the wealthy. Sons that attended boarding schools. Sons with addictions. Sons found in books. Sons of sons. Sons and fathers. In &Sons David Gilbert introduces his readers to all these types of sons.
A. N. Dyer is a famous reclusive writer/author and father to three sons and one grandson. He is also old, grumpy, and selfish. He has written one of the most celebrated coming of age novels of his time, Ampersand. Everywhere he or his sons go they are reminded of this fact. He has held on to secret about one if his sons that is larger than Ampersand could ever be. Ultimately, he wants to mend his relationship with his sons before he dies which means getting them all together and telling the truth.
Richard and Jamie Dyer are the elder sons. Their paths in life were completely opposite. The young seventeen year old Andy Dyer was more annoying than anything. He was full of teenage emotions and hormones. The narrator, Philip Topping, was a family friend whose father was A. N. Dyer's best friend growing up and until his death. Philip was dealing with his own family tragedies while being totally obsessed with the Dyer clan. You get the feel that Philip was trying too hard to fit in throughout the entire novel. He was extremely annoying.
This novel got off to slow start for me but picked up towards the middle. The supplemental narratives of Richard and Jamie Dyer kept the novel interesting. Portions of Ampersand was included throughout the story and it was constantly being referenced which I found it to be unnecessary. &Sons had a certain complexity that I enjoyed but overall I found it to be stuffy and more suited for a male audience.
**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher. The views and opinions shared are strictly my own.
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