A Novel

Large Print - 2008
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The Condition tells the story of a proper New England family that comes apart one fateful summer. To their dismay, Frank and Paulette McKotch's daughter, Gwen, has been diagnosed with Turner's syndrome--a genetic condition that leaves her trapped forever in the body of a child, and sparks heated dispute between the couple.

Twenty years later, their three children--now grown, and each struggling with secret conditions of their own--are still dealing with the fallout of Frank and Paulette's divorce. Then, suddenly, Gwen falls in love for the first time, and the family's world is again tilted on its axis.

In an era when individual quirks look increasingly like symptoms and every symptom demands to be treated, the McKotches are determined to fix themselves and each other. They are a family for our time.

Publisher: New York, NY : Harper Collins : 2008
Edition: Large print ed
ISBN: 9780061562778
Branch Call Number: LGP FIC Haig
Characteristics: 625p


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Jan 08, 2013

I enjoyed this novel, although not as much as Jennifer Haigh's other books. You take journeys through all the family member's lives, weaving in and out of each character's life chapter by chapter. At the end there is some sense of completeness, as the character's stories intertwine.

Oct 01, 2012

Wow, does the description of this book ever get it wrong: it covers way more than one summer, the eldest child does NOT investigate his sister's chromosomal disorder, and the mother is a control freak who above all else wants to manage her daughter's life (and everyone else's, as far as she can manage). This is a big work, covering a huge time period, and the author does a marvellous job of making it all seem immediate and real. As one reviewer on the back cover puts it, "The ailment at the centre of this remarkable novel is the human condition itself." The Condition is a great read from start to finish, thoroughly enjoyable. It is NOT about what the description here says! Instead, it first shows the McKotch family during the summer in which the father realizes there is something amiss with his daughter. The action then jumps ahead 20 years - but the reader is filled in, when and as it's appropriate, on those missing years, and how things have played out for the parents and the three children. This is a character-driven story, and Jennifer Haigh has created wonderfully complex characters for it. She is a master of nuance and detail and she has a rich story to tell. Definitely recommend.

Jun 23, 2012

Great read, not a literary masterpiece but great characters and storyline that engages you. Perfect for a summer read.

Jun 05, 2012

It starts slowly but by the end one is caught up in each of the characters and is worth the read.

Nov 19, 2008

A very enjoyable book with characters that we can all relate to within our family. It is an examination of how we are perceived by our families, our attempts to fulfill those perceptions and the often tragic outcomes for not being who you are.

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