Her Fearful Symmetry~ Audrey Niffenegger
I eagerly awaited the release of this novel like nobody’s business. It’s Audrey Niffenegger’s first since “The Time Traveller’s Wife,” which I read every so often just so that I can once again sob through the entire end. Of course, having such high expectations for anything is setting oneself up for disappointment.
Unlike “Time Traveller’s Wife,” which I couldn’t put down, it was a real struggle to get through this book. While beautifully written, I felt that the reader had to wait far too long to get to the real crux of the story.
TxtingMrDarcy Notes Version: A set of creepy twins moves to London because their Aunt, who is their mother’s creepy twin, has left them her apartment next to Highgate Cemetary. CHEERY. They live above the dead aunt’s ex-lover, and she is haunting her former apartment, watching in frustration as those left behind try to move on with their lives. Martin, a crossword puzzle creator with OCD lives in the apt above. *spoiler-His subplot is the best part of the story* FINALLY the creepy twins become aware that their aunt is haunting the place, mayhem ensues, people are jerks, and it ends unsatisfyingly.
After spending months with these characters, I wasn’t sad to see the story end. While Niffenegger did a good job of getting me to feel that I knew the characters and wanted their stories to turn out well, she revealed all (except for Robert and Martin) to be extremely unlikeable people. Each of them makes selfish decisions that they’re then unable to take back, and any good intentions are totally thwarted. If you are looking for a beautiful love story like “The Time Traveller’s Wife”, or a happy ending, avoid this book altogether.
I had read “The Three Incestuous Sisters,” also by Niffenegger, years ago, and found it to be extremely odd. When reading about the subject matter of this newest novel, I suspected that her weirder side would be showcased in the writing and was disappointingly right.
Verdict: If you must read it, wait for paperback.