PositiveThe New York Times Book ReviewLloyd’s debut presents nine gently told stories that focus on just a few understated moments and yet span generations, managing the sweep of a wide angle and expansive lens ... fraught moments of complex emotion—sometimes mundane, sometimes muted—are a refrain throughout the book ... losses, often insignificant and ungrand, are the tender heart of this collection—the spaces Lloyd’s characters pass through blithely, considering them only in hindsight, long after the fact. The Something Wonderful, then, is the thing at once vague enough to be indefinable, and yet still meaningful enough for the characters to notice when it’s gone.
PositiveThe New York Times Book ReviewWolitzer has a gentle touch for conveying the nuances and humor to be found in small moments of intrigue ... Many of these stories were published in the ’60s and ’70s...and are rather concrete in plot, traditional in style. By the time Paulette and Howard have reached their 60s, in \'The Great Escape,\' written in 2020, Wolitzer has moved into a more lyrical, abstract and fragmentary present ... Common themes connect the other stories to these linked ones: absent fathers, infidelity, a trembling line between the hyper-sanity of daily ritual and the tilt into madness. However, some of the book’s charm is lost in the gaps between Paulette and Howard’s story line. Throughout these dispatches from the American homefront, the family unit is formed, broken, pasted back together, mused over—but always serves as the anchor for Wolitzer’s narratives ... Intrigue may lead a story, but for Wolitzer the daily rituals of family always carry it.
PositiveThe New York Times Book Review... there is an element of affection, one that seeps through every page of Choi’s debut ... Choi’s characters live, forget, make bonds, break them, heal them or not. Their affections are no less deep for the circumstances that often separate them from one another.