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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Three Junes - Julia Glass

I decided to read Three Junes by Julia Glass for the National Book Awards Challenge. Previously this year, I read her more recent novel I See You Everywhere and thought it was a pretty good read. It took me a while to pick up Three Junes, well, because I thought the cover was pretty boring. But once I did I was hooked. I loved it. I love loved it. It's now on my all-time favorites list. I rented it from the library but I'm going to have to now buy it. And I'm not even sure I'm going to be able to tell you why I loved it so much. So here it goes:

The book revolves around a Scottish family, the McLeods. The books starts out in June of 1989 with Paul McLeod, recently widowed, taking a vacation in Greece. There are flashbacks to his past life with his wife, how they met, and raising their three sons.

Six years later, it's June again and Paul McLeod has just passed away. The three sons are gathered together with their wives and families in Scotland to pay homage to their father. This section is narrated by Fenno, the eldest son who is an expat and gay man living in New York City. It's during this period that Fenno starts to unravel some of their family history and family relationships are tested. He also flashes back to his past in New York and to his relationship with a gay man who is dying of AIDS.

Four years later, the story is narrated by...well, I won't tell you the last narrator.

So why did I like it so much? The plot of the story is pretty odd. Is there really a plot? It's really all about the characters. The story sucks you in by having Paul McLeod narrate. And you really like him. And this first part is short and then he dies. So you're already invested in the story. The second section is the longest section, narrated by Fenno, and I just fell for that character. I mean, while reading this section I loved to take the book for coffee, sit down, and just savor the book.

When I finished the book I was so disappointed. Not disappointed in the ending, but sad that it ended at all. It took me awhile to read this book. I didn't rush through it, I didn't check on what book was waiting in my TBR que, I just sat and drank coffee and savored it.

A big thanks to Vivienne and Lit and Life for encouraging me to post my reviews!

Also Reviewed by:

Lit and Life


  1. Did we bully you a bit? This book sounds fabulous. Thank you for reviewing it. Promise I won't moan in future.

  2. Oh, I'm so glad you loved this! I have it to read but felt the same way about "I See You Everywhere."

  3. Thanks for your review of Three Junes. I recently finished I See You Everywhere, but did not enjoy it very much. It just didn't grab me. I've been wondering whether I should give Three Junes a try. Your review convinced me to add it to my TBR list.

  4. I remember really enjoying this too when I read it a few years ago, esp. the character of Fenno. Still haven't read anything else by Julia Glass but must do one of these days.

  5. And Julia Glass is a delightful and gracious person, if you ever happen to meet her. :)

  6. And Julia Glass is a delightful and gracious person, if you ever happen to meet her. :)

  7. Julia Glass: I don't believe I've ever read anything by her, but MAY look her up next time I'm at the library (next week: too busy this week).

    Oh, also you've won an award, which you pick up here:


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