I’ve been waiting for a new big fat sweeping family saga.
And here it is.
While many first novels deal with the question of how a self is formed, fewer deal with the self’s slow unravelling. We Are Not Ourselves follows the history of a family, from the childhood of Eileen Tumulty in an Irish-American household in New York, through her marriage to Edmund Leary and the birth of their son, Connell.
Thomas was thinking big when he began. “I always wanted to write something somewhat sweeping,” he says. “Towards the beginning, the efforts were discouraging. You think that you might just want to do a truncated version of what you set out to do—and you always do, anyway, the book is never exactly what you imagine it will be—but I had in mind something big. I tried to make it as short as I could and still tell the story I needed to tell.”