Thursday, April 21, 2016

The Nest: What's Money Between Siblings?

A great modern poet once wrote: "You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you might find you get what you need." That's the theme of Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney's terrific dysfunctional family story, The Nest. The questions of the novel: What happens when something you'd been counting on — in this case, a YUGE inheritance — is suddenly gone? How do you adjust? How do you extract the wrenches thrown in the works of your carefully laid plans?

What we have here is four New York City siblings, whose father died and left them all a trust. But the catch is that it could only be dispersed when the youngest sibling turns 40. The mother, Francie, a decidedly Lucille Bluth-like character, has resisted all requests from the four to borrow from The Nest...that is until only a few months before the money's about to be doled out, eldest son Leo wrecks his car with a 19-year-old-not-his-wife waitress, and some hush money is required.

So The Nest, a windfall all four siblings had counted on, is mostly gone. And though Leo, fresh from rehab, promises to pay them all back, they're all pretty skeptical he will. The story that unfolds is about how each sibling, to varying degrees of success, deals with the money being gone. They'd made plans. They'd kept certain financial indiscretions from their significant others. They'd lied.

This novel is just an absolute delight from cover to cover. It's funny, it's sad, it's chock full of social commentary and wickedly sharp observation. And these characters are so fully real — they're all empathetic, but the moment you start feeling badly for them, they do something that makes you just cringe.

I loved it! It's one my favorite novels of the year so far. Just so fun and scandalous — well worth the considerable hype!


  1. I don't read many new books but, having been through something similar to the the plot of The Nest, although on a far less dramatic scale, the book is definitely on my 2016 reading list. Thank you for helping to know what to expect!

  2. Can't wait to get my hands on this book!

  3. I keep hearing about this! Good to hear it held up for you. I'm thinking it may come on vacation with me this summer.