A NoveleBook - 2006
Distraught when her youngest son, twenty-two-year-old Ben, plans to leave home, Edie, an actress, and her theatrical agent husband, Russell, are faced with an empty nest for the first time, until their older son Matthew, upset about earning less than his successful girlfriend, and daughter Rosa, wrestling with debt and a failed love affair, plan to move back in. Reprint. 40,000 first printing.
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Because many of Bill's hiring choices were disastrous, he got in plenty of practice at subsequently firing them. He was impervious to any suggestions, however diplomatically put, about his judgement, and equally resistant to criticism about the manner in which he eradicated his own errors.
She had not supposed, for one moment, that five years after leaving university she would have failed to find absorbing employment, failed to sustain a romantic relationship, and failed to gain exactly the kind of control over her life that she had assumed to be an automatic part of growing up.
She had begun to feel faintly sick, sick in the way you feel when you have told yourself that, as you don't want something, you will make no effort to secure it, and then discover that your indifference is not as deep as you had supposed.
When you were faced with rejection, in whatever situation and however deserved or undeserved, it wasn't just your confidence that suffered, it was your faith in the future, your ability to see that any effort you might make could be a tiny investment in what would happen to you thereafter.
In a grown-up world, I should be sorting it. I should be waking up one morning full of resolve and vow to clear my life of clutter and make a list of priorities. I shouldn't be wandering about like some hopeless animal that's escaped from its field and can't find the way back in.
His mother had always told him, finding him reading as a child yet again, that he was lazy.
Rosa had been away five years, and in five years the kitchen table had stopped being a family altar and reverted to being a kitchen table. This room, this house, this street had stopped, in essence, being her _home_, and turned itself, slightly chillingly, into merely the place where she grew up.
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