“Three Junes” by Julia Glass

Three Junes was recommended to me by a writer friend, and I can see why. Though the title and the cheesy cover suggest breezy chicklit, there’s a lot more of substance between these covers. The book is actually three novellas, narrated by interlocking characters. Within each novella, the action shifts back and forth in time. It takes a great deal of authorial control to make shifts like these clear rather than confusing. Glass pulls this off with apparent ease.

The first part is narrated by Paul McLeod, a Scotsman whose wife has recently died. He’s on holiday to Greece, while he quietly assesses his life past and present. The next, and longest, segment is narrated by his eldest son, Fenno, a semi-closeted homosexual who now lives in the United States. The final segment is narrated by a minor character from the first section. It ties things together, and progress the novel’s themes of love, commitment, risk, relationship and family to a satisfying conclusion that didn’t feel forced or saccharine.

Comments are closed.