Monday, July 11, 2011

Noah's Compass by Anne Tyler

(audio version) This was a perfect night-time, knitting, listening-to novel. The main character is a middle-aged gentleman and the narrator had a voice that fit well with the age. Part of the fascination of this book was that Liam was 61 and considered himself old and ready for the rocking chair on the veranda. He's only 5 years older than me! Seeing the world through his eyes was a hoot.
Liam is a once widowed, once divorced father of three girls who has just lost his job. His dilemma now is to either get a new job (he was a teacher) or consider himself retired and spend the rest of his days reading his beloved philosophy books. Along the way he has conflicts with his children, a summer romance with a younger woman and much reflecting on what he has done with his life.
Another wonder-factor for me was his disconnect with his children. He seemed content to live his own life and let them live theirs and rarely the twain meet. This is so different to my way of dealing with family that I was left pondering the question of "am I too involved with my children's lives?"
Liam seemed to be looking for purpose in his life. I wish he didn't have the stereotypical religious evangelical Christian for a daughter. Rather than spouting cliches, she may have been able to lead him to a Jesus that could resolve the worry state his current life situation was causing .

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