BookBrowse Reviews Tumbledown by Robert Boswell

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Tumbledown

by Robert Boswell

Tumbledown
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Aug 2013, 448 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 2014, 456 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Norah Piehl

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This delightful novel reminds readers that the ability to build nurturing relationships is present in all people – no matter how fractured their personalities may be.

"Everybody, it seems, has to live in this tumbledown world, not just him. He isn't alone..." These thoughts, which occur to one of Robert Boswell's characters near the end of Tumbledown, sum up its theme (or at least the experience of reading the book) well. The story manages to wrest a kind of hopefulness from what could, in other contexts or in other hands, be a pretty bleak setup for a novel.

Tumbledown' s central character is thirty-something James Candler. A counselor at Onyx Springs, a treatment facility outside San Diego, he's on the verge of a big administrative promotion. Candler has been groomed for this position almost since his arrival – he now has the clothes, fancy car, and even the fiancée that, according to the outgoing director's definition of success, such a position requires.

No one's been watching Candler's rise as closely as Elizabeth (Lise) Ray. A ...

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