The Nest

By Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney

4 out of 5 stars

The Nest is what the Plumb children call their inheritance from their father. He set it up so that they would all get their money when Melody, the youngest, turned 40. He started it thinking it would be a little nest egg to keep them comfortable but with good investments, it’s quite a sizable sum. They have all been banking on the money. Jack has been borrowing against his little summer cottage to keep his store running, without telling his husband Walker. Melody bought a house in a very good school district to raise her twins , one they have had to struggle to keep, waiting for the money for her girls’ college education. Bea, well Bea, hasn’t stressed on it as much as the others. Bea wanted Leo’s approval more than anything.  And then there is Leo. Leo is the charmer, the one everyone wants to please and yet he wants to please no one. It’s Leo that causes the conflict in this book. He has an accident with a young waitress he spirits away from a family wedding. She loses a foot and Leo’s mother will do anything to prevent any scandal and poof! There goes most of the nest. When he gets out of rehab, the others find out just what happened to the money and their lives are all turned upside down.

I went into this book with maybe the wrong attitude. It’s been touted as one of “THE” books of the year. The author got a boatload of money in advance. But I did like it. It was hard to put down. This family is so screwed up, as families are, and money has made them crazy, as it does. It’s funny how people feel they are so deserving.  You couldn’t wait for them to all have that light bulb moment. It did drag a bit with some other characters that probably didn’t need to be there but they did play into the story eventually. I loved the way the family changed as the story went on. (Their mother was a real piece of work so Leo made a lot of sense.)  Honestly, you may not like a few of the characters at different times in the story. They have a haughty sense of themselves but there is redemption and that made it all work for me.

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