The Hills at Home
The Hills at Home
By Nancy Clark
Anchor Books, Paperback, 9781400030965, 481pp.
Publication Date: June 8, 2004
While always well-stocked with clean sheets, Lily Hill is not expecting visitors. At least not in the numbers that descend upon her genteely dilapidated New England ancestral home in the summer of ’89. Brother Harvey arrives first, thrice-widowed and eager for company; then perennially self-dramatizing niece Ginger and her teenaged daughter Betsy; then Alden, just laid-off from Wall Street, with his wife Becky, and their rowdy brood of four . . .
As summer fades into fall, it becomes clear that no one intends to leave. But just as Lily’s industrious hospitality gives way to a somewhat strained domestic routine, the Hill clan must face new challenges together. Brimming with wit and a compendium of Yankee curiosities, The Hills at Home is an irresistible modern take on an old-fashioned comedy of manners.
“A graceful, intelligent, and very funny chronicle of a large, extended family beneath one
capacious roof.” –The New York Times Book Review
“Jane Austen is alive. What’s more shocking, the grandmother of social satire has moved in with Jonathan Franzen, and the two of them have produced a love child called The Hills at Home. . . . The wittiest family portrait in years.” –The Christian Science Monitor
“There’s no averting eyes from Clark’s story, which includes family intrigue, gossip, romance and, of course, more than a few gin and tonics.” –Chicago Tribune
“Delicious. . . . Gently but precisely satiric.” –New York Newsday
“Like a jumbo-sized Shakespearean comedy. . . . Leisurely in its pace and lavish in its detail, with a humor that ranges from arch to zany.” –The Seattle Times
“Imbued with a sweet intelligence that brings each member of the title family to vivid life. . . . Clark has created each character with a unique, stubbornly individualistic voice and parcels the narrative among them as deftly as Becky divides the after-dinner pies.”–Houston Chronicle
“Delightful. . . . Sets a new standard for modern family novels, a 20th century Trollope. . . . Offers a harvest ground of subtle, smile-out-loud hilarity.” –BookPage
“Witty. . . . Charming, old-fashioned, and leisurely: Reminiscent of Elizabeth Bowen or Muriel Spark, with petty strifes rendered truly as both comic (in their pettiness) and poignant (in their strife).” –Kirkus Reviews
“A warm, amusing and sparkling domestic comedy of manners. . . . Colorful and lively.” –Publishers Weekly
“Narrated with great intelligence and subtle humor . . . accomplished, invigorating. . . . Clark has a keen eye and an outrageous gift for wry understatement.” –Bookforum