Run tackles so many different issues so effortlessly—interracial families, adoption, the untimely death of a parent or spouse, a crisis of faith, and the question of what to do with one’s life—that one wonders whether Ann Patchett started out to write an “issue novel” and came up with this pretty meditation on an unconventional family instead.
But it is clear on reflection that her story flows from her characters rather than causes—and what intriguing characters they are! The former mayor of
Their lives are changed in one night when they meet
To reveal more would spoil the numerous surprises Patchett plants throughout the novel, though even a thorough foreknowledge of the plot would not diminish the enjoyment of reading the prose. The dialogue rings true, while Patchett’s descriptions—be they of a setting, a facial expression, a memory—are lyrical and lovely.
Readers who come to this via Bel Canto will be pleased; if anything Patchett is in even better form. If she keeps up at this rate, she may well write the great American novel next—if she hasn’t already. Highly recommended.
This review has been posted on Amazon.com. Run will be released October 1 and was provided for review early as part of Amazon's Vine program.