This book was hilarious.
I don’t say that lightly. I can’t remember the last time I read a book that made me laugh out loud. Now that I’m thinking about it, I don’t actually know if a book has ever made me laugh out loud.
Other People’s Houses is special.
Don’t get me wrong, it still has all of the classic neighbourhood drama clichés: the beautiful woman cheating on her husband with a much younger man, the couple who fights about whether or not they should have more children, the stay at home mom who outwardly appears to have it all together.
But this book is nothing like any other book I’ve ever read. If Abbi Waxman walked into the room right now I would stand up and slow clap.
Other People’s Houses is about several families who all live on one street in Los Angeles. Their lives are intertwined through blood relations, friendship, and a series of odd events that bring them together.
At the centre of the story is one woman’s affair and the ripple effect is has on the community.
Other People’s Houses is refreshing. It’s charming and relatable and funny and warm. The characters have been beautifully constructed, and Waxman has masterfully woven her own tone and style throughout the story.
In most books, what really keeps you reading is the overarching story. You want to get to the end so that you can find out what happens to the characters you’ve become attached to. And while that is, to an extent, true for this book, I think what I found so special is that it was the small details and exchanges throughout the book that kept me hooked rather than the bigger picture.
The little things in this story were what made it so special. Like the hipster, annoying mom at the community soccer game who named her daughter “Otter”. Or the matter-of-fact way a character’s daughter spoke about My Little Pony.
I loved the realistic way Waxman portrayed friendships and relationships. It was nice to read something that is reflective of how the world actually works, and how difficult it can be to maintain healthy, functioning relationships while also trying to balance everything else.
This book could (and should) end up being one of the big hits of the spring and summer. It’s the perfect road trip of beach read. It’s entertaining and funny, and manages to be both complicated and light-hearted at the same time. It will fill the void that Big Little Lies left behind in so many of us.
You might also like:
- Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
- Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty