Tracey Lange’s debut novel, We Are the Brennan’s is a family saga full of secrets, drama and intrigue.
At the age of twenty-four Sunday Brennan walked out on her fiancé Kale, father Mickey, and her two brothers Denny and Jackie to pursue a writing career in Los Angeles. Now 29, she is working as a waitress struggling to get her work published, living alone in a one-bedroom apartment.
Moving five years ago she did not envisage her life to be like this, especially now as she lies hurt in a hospital bed from driving intoxicated and crashing into a barricade.
Suffering a broken arm, multiple wounds and bruising her older brother Denny is at her bedside, shocked by her appearance he knows he must persuade her to come home so she can get the care she needs to fully recover. Grudgingly she agrees to go home.
Upon her return, Sunday is welcomed with open arms by her family. Denny encourages her to work at the family pub Brennan’s, he and Kale are in the midst of opening a new pub but when a burst pipe occurs and ruins the foundation finances are tight, Denny is hiding a secret that could ruin both businesses.
Being back home Sunday is dealing with her emotions, no one knows the reason she left and seeing Kale married with a son is hard, especially when Kale’s feelings for her resurface threatening the life he has created.
Will he ever know the truth and is there enough to fulfill her being home?
I really enjoyed Sunday’s character; she is an absolute mess. You will love her and hate her and root for her the whole time. She’s brave and bright and she’ll show you that it’s not success that makes a person strong and admirable but rather the way they respond in the face of failure.
There are wonderful supporting characters in the book: Denny the oldest son who everyone relies on to be the protector of all, married to Theresa with a six-year-old daughter, Molly. Sunday’s twin Jackie is an artist and holder of secrets, they have a special twin-bond. Shaun, the youngest brother is loveable and kind, he suffers from a learning disability.
Kale Collins, Denny’s business partner and best friend and Sunday’s ex. As the reading audience, you get to know these full characters, and feel for their situations, the distance between them, their relationships, obstacles and struggles.
Tracey Lange has a wonderful way with dialogue, pace, and conflict, she delivers a story that will hold readers until the end. There are twists and turns, secrets and lies that will keep you on your toes but most importantly there is family. Tracey highlights the strength of having loved ones around, so you don’t suffer alone when everything is falling apart.
We Are the Brennan’s does not limit itself to the complications of human relationships, it is a look into the secrets of a family that, at least on the surface, always seemed so normal. Leading the reader through tragedies, the author weaves a plot that opens readers’ hearts. Each chapter is narrated by a different character that gives the novel an authentic touch.
I highly recommend this novel which you could happily read more than once.
Thank you, Beauty and Lace and Pan Macmillan AU for the opportunity to read and review.
Author: Tracey Lange
Copy courtesy of publisher: Pan Macmillan AU
A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club Members are reading We Are the Brennans by Tracey Lange. You can read their comments below, or add your own review.
My love of books started at a very young age. My mum has always been a reader and encouraged me to read, buying me endless book from classic fairy tales advancing to the world of Enid Blyton, CS Lewis, Louisa May Alcott, Kathryn Kenny, Carolyn Keene, Francine Pascal. In my adult years the list of authors is endless and every room in my house is filled with books.
One of my favourite novels is Narnia which has always has a special place in my heart. I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 1978 and when I was given this book to read it let me escape to another world where I felt like I was in the book with all the characters, it wasfun and exciting to escape from reality and eased the ups and downs of the disease at such a young age.
In books nothing is impossible and there is endless potential and hundreds of places to explore or being taken to places that are only made up from the authors’ great minds, the past and future to navigate, characters lives you step into taking you on an emotional rollercoaster ride or being scared out of your wits. I can experience things that I can’t in real life because they’re not possible or real. It challenges my perspective and mindset expanding my worldview.
I find joy, comfort and peace with books, many people may not get it, but I know bookworms like me truly understand. Reading makes my heart happy.