Excerpt: William Trevor almost always describes a character early in the story, using only a sentence or two, but getting at the essence of the character in a way that feels intimate and true. The descriptions are highly visual, often focusing on the face, but always gesturing towards characterization.
Hampl has been writing at the intersection of memoir and essay for most of her life. Now, displaying a heightened partnership of experience and reflection, she revisits people and events with insight produced by leisure and the ostensibly wasted day.
In focusing on the interior life of a man in crisis, Gilvarry is able to speak to the beauty that can be found at the end of an existential crisis, at the end of middle age.
Who says a good beach read can’t also be a book that packs some punch? Here are four of this summer’s best.