Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout

September 1, 2022 (by Leah)


I’m making my way through the shortlist for the 2022 Booker Prize and just finished this one. Oh how I want to have coffee with Lucy Barton, the character (an author) who narrates this book about marriage, family and connection.  I can just hear Lucy sighing, ‘Oh William’, as she tells us about her ex-husband’s life and their relationship.  It’s really more a series of musings that tell the story and define the characters (so if you are looking for an action packed plot, keep browsing), but this quiet novel succeeded in pulling me into their world.
“when I think Oh William!, don’t I mean Oh Lucy! too? Don’t I mean Oh Everyone, Oh dear Everybody in this whole wide world, we do not know anybody, not even ourselves! — Except a little tiny, tiny bit we do. — But we are all mythologies, mysterious. We are all mysteries, is what I mean. — This may be the only thing in the world I know to be true.”