I first picked up a copy of The Family Fang in a Barnes and Noble on a chilly winter afternoon with no intention of buying it. I doubt that I picked it up for any particular reason; if I did, I certainly don’t remember that reason now. When browsing in a bookstore, one picks up books; more often than not, one puts them right back down again and that’s the end of that. In this case, though, I read the first page, and then I read the second page, and then half an hour later I was a good ways in and I shut it and put it back on the shelf, and went looking for something a little less uncomfortable. That was a few years ago; back in August, I spotted The Family Fang on a library shelf and figured it was about time I finished it, so I checked it out and read it in a single afternoon. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that I enjoyed it, but it was an interesting book.
Good fiction is not always comforting and not always comfortable. And why should it be? Read the rest of this entry »