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Need to get up to start assimilating you find yourself repeating under your breath How did I get here How is this my life This is that juncture actualizedMatt isn t the best father Hell he s barely even aware of his daughters And those daughtersthey re the embodiment of everything you hoped your ids would never turn out to be Except that in a way he is amazing with his girls and those girls they re every bit like your Carlyle Marney kids It s only after first glance that you begin to see this family for who they really are Smart and funny heartbreaking and disappointing take the journey with Matt and his girls as they watch the life they thought they had crumble and cry along with them as they struggle to become a family for the first time So I may or may not have read this while I was at work over the last monthand I liked it but I m not sure if I would have finished it had I not been sitting around at work doing nothing It was well written andept my interest even though I ve seen the movie and Shameful knew what was going to happen Probably the only thing thatept me from fully enjoying this book was that sometimes the way the dad spoke about his daughters made me uncomfortable That s about it A story set in Hawaii Matthew is a very rich lawyer he s rotten rich mainly because of heritages he got which date back to his grand grandmother princess Kekipi she married a banker who was her assets manager Now Matt has plenty of properties to sell and yet he prefers using the money of his own job I don t like heritages She was seven years younger than Matt They met 20 years ago They got married they had two daughters but now she s in a hospital in a coma she had a racing boat accident Joanie was alcoholic she liked motorbikesand racing boats Scottie is a 10 year old crazy girl her older sister Alex once posing as model for bikinis and alike stuff had dr The other day my friend was saying to me that she recently saw The Descendants and thought it was a pretty dumb name for a film which has nothing to do with the protagonist s descendants I have not seen it yet but I thought maybe the title was overtly related to the book a relation which then became lost in its translation to film Regardless it does fit the book rather nicely and it is not about the protagonist s descendants either but about his being a descendant a descendant of Hawaiian royalty back when Hawaii was a ingdom and the burden of his needing to make his own way in the world for himself and for his daughters that leaves him with the legacy of having done something or of having started something so that he can be in some respects at the top of that family tree as opposed to on some lowly descendant branchBut really Some burden rightExcept Matt King and yes that really is his name has a few serious burdens to contend with namely his dying wife and the two children in whose growth he has played no significant part until now This book is mostly about this transition for him from non participatory parent and probably inadeuate husband to involved father and coping widower with a few curveballs thrown in for good measureIt is a decent book and while I don t always like to extend my own opinion of a book s characters into my evaluation of the work as a whole oh who am I idding of course I do I had difficulty relating to Matt For someone whose wife is dying and who has just learned has been cuckolding the crap out of him I could not understand his understanding I mean sure he says he is angry but he certainly doesn t behave as though he were angry In fact he does things that are in complete opposition to what I would expect an angry person to do in such a situation I am sorry but no one is that well adjusted I refuse to believe it Still the book is pretty decent in spite of this There were other characters I liked a lot namely Sid Matt s oldest daughter s friend and even though the movie will probably cast him horribly I have not checked yet he than makes up for the inadeuacies of some of the other charactersLike Mat. To seek out Joanie's lover so that he too has a chance to say his goodbyes Matt takes to the road with his daughters on a memorable journey of painful revelations and unexpected humou.
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View spoiler Bettie s Books hide spoiler I really didn t like this book I have to say I liked it enough to finish it it is a rarity if I don t finish a book that I start but overall didn t like it I couldn t empathize with the dying wife I felt bad that she was dying but I didn t like her character at all The youngest daughter Scottie was made out to be this extreme 10 year old obsessed with sex and fitting in that would have been believable if she was 12 14 but not 10 The oldest daughter was the most interesting but from the beginning of the book to the end she changed dramatically without there being any description of her changing and so she just seems almost like a completely new character at the endI felt like the whole selling of land aspect the buyers and the scheming of the wife could have been set up better built up better And at the end when he decides not to sell the land that scene should have been given a weight that it didn t get It was no than 4 5 pages and for something that was essentially the secondary plot to the book it should have been given thought I was really interested in this book when I originally bought it especially since it has such great Oscar buzz but I was disappointed Whoa I m not sure where this author came from but look out Her characters are in your FACE funny and scary with an emotional swirl in the background that makes it hard to breathe The premise which is almost beside the point is that Matthew King s wife is in a coma And he has to rise up to the occasion and be a parent in a way he neve I have always had a soft spot for books written by women from the point of view of a male character I find them endearing Men writing as women can often be a little unconvincing with lots of lines like I jogged up the steps my breasts bouncing lightly under my summery blouse or Suddenly my period started Women writing as men do not make these sorts of mistakes you don t get things like I marched into the bathroom and urinated fiercely remaining standing throughout although I half suspect that Grey by EL James is full of that Sacred Landscapes kind of thing But it s easier for them isn t it thanks to the historical preponderance of male writers women have plenty of exposure to how men think whereas many men still find women a total mysteryWhy am I talking about this I don tnow The Descendants does have a male narrator a convincing one though that is not the most interesting thing about the way the story s told An expansion of one of Hemmings s earlier short stories the novel is a bittersweet family drama played out in Hawai i about a father trying to reestablish his relationship with his daughters after their mother is hospitalised Still the choice of narrator is an interesting decision since the conventional way to tell this story perhaps would have been to make it a classic coming of age tale from the point of view of one of the girlsThe tone is set by the admirably opinionated opening lineThe sun is shining mynah birds are chattering palm trees are swaying so whatNot all of the prose that follows is uite so sparky though As is often the case with books that try to reproduce the numb feeling of dealing with a tragedy the results can feel a little flat and this isn t helped by the present tense narration not a techniue that I dislike on principle but here it somehow reinforces a sense that we are meandering through the day to day banalities as they happen rather than looking back on the selected highlights of a storyThe daughters are extremely well drawn one young and not fully aware of what s happening the other teenaged and hormonal both observed coolly by a father who loves them but who has never really got to now them Looming lushly behind our cast are the Hawaiian islands here richly contextualised they are seen on the one hand as the product of a very specific imperialist history our protagonist traces his family back to Hawaiian royalty and to the American sugar magnates that overthrew them a descent on which as the title sugges. A descendant of one of Hawaii's largest landowners Matt King finds his luck changed when his fun loving flighty wife Joanie falls into a coma victim of a boating accident Matt is left.
Ts much of the plot turns and on the other hand as a modern retirement home for all the wealthy baby boomers whose children are growing up in an unearned paradiseI wonder if our offspring have all decided to give up They ll never be senators or owners of a football team they ll never be the West Coast president of NBC the founder of Weight Watchers the inventor of shopping carts a prisoner of war the number one supplier of the world s macadamia nuts No they ll do coke and smoke pot and take creative writing classes and laugh at usA dig at herself perhaps her prose certainly shows all the hallmarks of a creative writing graduate inoffensive and thoughtful concerned with parents and infidelity and daily frustrations But it s intelligently done and I enjoyed itRight that s the review done Now I m off to urinate fiercely remaining standing throughout I was hesitant to read this book They made a movie with George Clooney based on it and I thought it was going to be some romantic Hollywood drivel Boy was I ever wrong This is a layered story of loss acceptance discovery and those first few steps to a new life Matt King has had everything handed to him in life The descendant of a Hawaiian princess and a white missionary he is the controlling partner of a family trust overseeing a great deal of Hawaiian land He has made his life on his own terms living on his earned income He has avoided the responsibility of the trust while building his business and is now faced with the decision for all of the heirs on whether they should sell their legacy Meanwhile his wife is in a coma after being injured in a boating race As the coma continujes Matt and his two daughters must decide on her future and theirs As they say good bye to one life they start on another This was an extremely moving story that explored many topics and relationships I sat up to 2 am one night to finish it and then cried myself to sleep This book moved me I saw the film last night and read the novel today Couldn t put it down I like that order to things film and then novel If I ve liked the charactersstory in the film I like to go to the book because I m sure to find detail and emotional analysisinsight there And that was certainly the case with this novel While the film was really faithful to the novel OF COURSE there is always going to just be MORE of everything in a book What you particularly get of in this book is insight into the character of Joanie the wife who is in a coma and then dies But you also get a much richer insight to Matt the husband as he careers from one shock and emotional blow to the next I thought that the complexity of Matt s range of emotion was so spot on The fact that he is an emotionally inarticulate person just made his plight interesting to me The characters in this book are far from perfect or noble the writer doesn t even try to make them lovable And yet they were lovable to me anyway They were terribly believably flawed Hemmings has a real gift for dialogue too although the childrenteens are astonishingly foul mouthed at times There are some interesting insights for the parents of my generation I m thinking of that scene in which Matt bemoans the fact that his children act like they don t even respect him and there is a crushing silenceAlthough there are moments of absurdity and bleak humour this is mostly grim subject matter but it suits my present mood and circumstances Death and infidelity and inheritance have an interesting and original specificity in this story I was really interested in the setting of contemporary Hawaii and the various ways in which it plays out in the story and yet the universality of those subjects made this story really resonate with me Have you ever been sitting somewhere life moving all around you and in that moment you are completely aware You can see the pieces of who you were yesterday falling to the ground as today begins to fill in the holes and all you can manage to do is sit there and watch it dissolve And as much as you now you. In sole charge of his two daughters teenage ex model and recovering drug addict Alex and Scottie a feisty ten year old And then Matt discovers Joanie has been having an affair Deciding.
Kaui Hart Hemmings ↠ 2 Review
I'm the author of The Descendants House of Thieves The Possibilities and Juniors a YA novel My next novel How to Party with an Infant will be published August 9 2016 Visit my website