Book summary: Music for Torching

1999 BY A.M. HOMES

Paul and Elaine have two boys and a beautiful home, yet they find themselves thoroughly, inexplicably stuck. Obsessed with 'making things good again', they spin the quiet terrors of family life into a fantastical frenzy that careens well and truly out of control. As A. M. Homes's incendiary novel unfolds, the Kodacolor hues of the American good life become nearly hallucinogenic: from a strange and hilarious encounter on the floor of the pantry with a Stepford-wife neighbour, to a house-cleaning team in space suits, to a hostage situation at the school. Homes lays bare the foundations of marriage and family life, and creates characters outrageously flawed, deeply human and entirely believable.

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