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As Nomi drives endlessly about the countryside with her own Lou Reed-loving boyfriend and puts off finishing an assignment for her oddly attentive English teacher, she pieces together her childhood memories in an effort to understand why she and Ray have been deserted. Toews's portrayal of teenage angst, Mennonite-style, is hilarious. East Village, Nomi observes, "was created as a kind of no-frills bunker in which to live austerely, shun wrongdoers and kill some time, and joy, before the Rapture." Regarding the pleasures of the next world, she quips, "I guess we'll be able to float around asking people to punch us in the stomach as hard as they can and not experience any pain, which could be fun for one afternoon." Nomi's steady patter of repartee and reminiscences grows a bit tiresome after a while, especially as this is a novel in which very little happens until the last 50 pages. Toews can't seem to resist a good one-liner, even at the expense of plot. For a light summer read with laugh-out-loud potential, however, A Complicated Kindness is the ticket. --Lisa Alward --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A disjointed and pointless book. A poor read with little or no obvious plot.Published 1 month ago by Leon Layden
I'm surprised that this book won a Governor General's literary award and was a Giller Prize finalist. Read morePublished 1 month ago by SoulFanGranny
I found the language too rough from someone with the author's background. I also got the feeling the author is/was ashamed of her background/history. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Daniel Entz
I've read A Complicated Kindness three times and I think I could read it again.Published 3 months ago by Gemma
I thought that the book was scattered.For me, it was not an enjoyable read. Finished the book and still wondering what it was aboutPublished 8 months ago by cassie edison-huntley
I thought this book was good. It was entertaining, and yet the feel of it was kind of depressing. Entertaining with the dark humour, (too dark for my tastes), as well as the... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Andrew Tomlinson
Arrived quickly and quality was as good if not better than in the description! Very happy to give book a second life!Published 9 months ago by Owen Bouchard
I have picked this book up 3 times and tried to read it, still trying to get through it. It is just not grabbing me from the start.Published on June 20 2010 by Gulin Villeneuve
Sometimes the jacket blurbs get it right.
This is a gem of a book. (I can't bring myself to call it a 'novel'. Maybe 'slices of fictional memoir' is how I'd label it. Read more