Still in his early 30s, Giordano sure seems to be using his time well. With Like Family, he has created another sober book – his third — about the difficulties of bridging our essential solitude. His vision is more melancholy than mirthful and demands a thoughtful, patient read. But Giordano's emphasis on the pressing importance of how we choose to live and love offers subtle hope that our decisions actually matter.
This may sound terribly bleak. But bleakness isn’t the overall mood of Like Family, nor is it the final note the book sounds; rather, it’s melancholy, and there’s a world of difference. The characters in Like Family know what hope is. They know joy, they know love. They are in pain because they know that illusions are often required to sustain these feelings.
Like Family is a snugly perfect fit, then, for this stock-taking time of year, when we notice at holiday gatherings the ways families expand and contract, how they can transform elementally with the addition of a new member or the loss of an established one.
This wonderfully poignant and heart-rending story looks at everyday lives with both reason and compassion. Author Giordano has a lyrical voice and an uncanny ability to create easy dialogue, real characters and a powerful message in this short book. The only fault I can find is that there wasn’t more of it.