Monday, September 2, 2013

The Family Fang

by Kevin Wilson
June-August 2013

I'm not completely sure what to say about this book. It left me feeling very uncomfortable, I know that. But I was immediately drawn to the premise: Two performance artists will do anything to create a strange and memorable piece. Their desired results always include their two children, who have been part of the "act" their whole lives. Annie and Buster, better known as Child A and Child B, now grown, have realized that being these "characters" has f*cked up their lives. The Fang's final work is one that leaves the reader squirming and wondering at what cost do we sacrifice family for art?

I have to say the author did a great job building the story. I never could have guessed where it was going. My predictions made me worry the book would lose its way, or jump the shark, but luckily I was wrong (I am a really bad predictor). I was literally shaking my head and clicking my tongue at these two crazy artists/parents.

I struggled in the beginning to get into the story, but it eventually picked up speed. Maybe it would have been easier to read it as opposed to the audio version? While the flashback sequences to the younger years of Buster and Annie's involvement in the performances were quite interesting, their current lives and story lines had me zoning out if I wasn't careful. But maybe that was the author's intention; to really illustrate what life can become when you are your parent's pawn for so long.

Quirky and fun, but only mildly recommended.

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