Mac's Backs Book Club discusses Confessions With Keith by Pauline Holdstock.
An outrageously comic novel documents a middle-aged writer and mother's grappling with mid-life crisis--her husband's and her own.
Preoccupied with her fledgling literary career, intent on the all-consuming consolations of philosophy, and scrambling to meet the demands of her four children, the acutely myopic and chronically inattentive Vita Glass doesn't notice that her house and her marriage are competing to see which can fall apart fastest. Meanwhile, Vita's eldest son is embarking on his professional career as a teenaged stoner, her eldest daughter can't be seen in public with her lest she succumb of mortal embarrassment, her younger son's gerbils won't stop having babies, and the baby of the family suffers debilitating grief over certain memories, including the thought of the Cats soundtrack and that one time she stepped on a hornet's nest. Plus the family dog is a Greek chorus of puke. Vita can barely find time for her writing career, and just when her newfound success in vegetable erotica is beginning to take off. Our heroine's only tried and trusted escape is the blissful detachment of Keith's hairdressing salon, but when her husband leaves the country, unannounced, she decides to do likewise--in the opposite direction, and with their children. Drawn from the pages of Vita's journal, this outrageously comic novel documents Vita's passage through a mid-life crisis and explores all the ways we deceive each other and ourselves.
"Holdstock's writing moves seamlessly between her research and her polished storytelling of people, landscape and grief. These are familiar preoccupations, but she continues to make them compelling and rich."
"Pauline Holdstock's language is so powerful, her writing so wrought with emotion and beauty, that you become fully lost in her world."
Pauline Holdstock is an award winning novelist, short fiction writer and essayist. Her books have been published in the US, the UK, Australia, Germany, Brazil and Portugal. In Canada, her work has been short-listed for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Commonwealth Writer's Prize, and others, and has won the BC Book Prizes Award for Fiction and the City of Victoria Butler Book Prize. She lives on Vancouver Island.
The book will be available at Mac's Backs or through our website at the 20% book club discount.
We will meet at the store (1820 Coventry Road in Cleveland Hts.) For those who wish to join remotely, here is the Zoom link - https://us02web.zoom.us/s/88018263993#success