The Sweetest Dream

The Sweetest Dream

Book - 2002
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Baker & Taylor
As Frances Lennox and her two sons try to make the best of their situation living with her conservative mother-in-law, her ex-husband dumps his second wife's problem child at her feet, in a novel that recreates the tumultuous political landscape of the 1960s.

HARPERCOLL
This story of a family, spanning most of the twentieth century, has its fulcrum in the Sixties, that contradictory and embattled decade about which argument becomes louder each day. The youth of that time, bursting old bonds and demanding freedoms, were seen by some of their elders in a manner not at all as they saw themselves, as romantic idealists, but as deeply damaged people. Old Julia, the clan's matriarch, knows why. "You can't have two dreadful wars and then say 'That's it, and now everything will go back to normal.' They're screwed up, our children, they are the children of war." Remarkable women, Julia and Frances, grandmother and mother, fight for "the kids" against obstacles, the worst being Comrade Johnny. Here is a memorable picture of a character only recently departed from our scene. "The revolution comes before personal matters" is his dictum, as he deposits discarded wives and hurt children in the accommodating house whose emotional center is always the extendable kitchen table, that essential prop of the Sixties, around which the family sits through the evenings, eating, joking, boasting about their shoplifting, debating the violent ideologies of the time that take some of them out to the Third World, another to a South African village dying of AIDS. This novel reflects our recent history like a many-faceted mirror, and is full of people not easily forgotten, each -- for worse or for better, directly or indirectly -- made by war.

Blackwell North Amer
This story of a family, spanning most of the twentieth century, has its fulcrum in the Sixties, that contradictory and embattled decade about which argument becomes louder each day. The youth of that time, bursting old bonds and demanding freedoms, were seen by some of their elders in a manner not at all as they saw themselves, as romantic idealists, but as deeply damaged people. Old Julia, the clan's matriarch, knows why. "You can't have two dreadful wars and then say 'That's it, and now everything will go back to normal.' They're screwed up, our children, they are the children of war."
Remarkable women, Julia and Frances, grandmother and mother, fight for "the kids" against obstacles, the worst being Comrade Johnny. Here is a memorable picture of a character only recently departed from our scene. "The revolution comes before personal matters" is his dictum, as he deposits discarded wives and hurt children in the accommodating house whose emotional center is always the extendable kitchen table, that essential prop of the Sixties, around which the family sits through the evenings, eating, joking, boasting about their shoplifting, debating the violent ideologies of the time that take some of them out to the Third World, another to a South African village dying of AIDS.

Baker
& Taylor

As Frances Lennox and her two sons try to make the best of their situation, which requires that they live with her conservative mother-in-law, her ex-husband Comrade Johnny dumps his second wife's problem child at her feet, in a dramatic novel that revisits the 1960s and recreates the tumultuous politcal landscape of the time, detailing the different male and female experiences of this era.

Publisher: New York : HarperCollins Pub., c2002
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780066213347
0066213347
Branch Call Number: F LES
Characteristics: 478 p. ; 24 cm

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GLNovak
May 07, 2015

We meet a family in London in the 1960's and follow them through to the end of the century. This was a time of great change and as I read I wondered how can Francis Lennox be like she is? so accepting and calm when all these children, some hers and some not, come and go in her home and expect the system that they are railing against to just support them without giving anything back. We see them loll around, shoplift, party and then show up at the dinner table ready to be fed and watered. Life goes on and we are introduced to them as middle-aged adults and find that the legacy of entitlement has been visited upon Africa where the effects are staggering. I found this a compelling read even though I was angry through much of it.

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