is a book about loss and heartbreak, also delusion, distaste, quiet villainy, and sabotage. There’s a strong pulse of hope near the beginning, the rhythm of which weakens as the narrative develops. It might have some heroism. It will have whining, especially if there is — and there always is — pain or vomiting involved. It’s set near the coast: there’s a running metaphor involving rogue sea waves and the crushing of the human spirit. There are choices made about whom to forgive and whom to set up in the display case near the front door, their irritating quirks dusted off whenever dislike wants justification. It’s a character-driven work, the laziness of the protagonist leading directly to the forfeiture of hope. In spite of this, birds sing, babies are born, etc.