Imperfect Bliss

by Susan Fales-Hill

With the Queen’s Jubilee and the 2012 Summer Olympics all over the news, it seems fitting to read a novel about the Harcourt family. Even though Forsythia, the matriarch, is of Jamaican heritage, she is in love with all things British. She and her husband, Harold (who is actually British), have four daughters, all named after a member of the royal Windsor family and it is Forsythia’s wish to have them each married off to their perfect prince. Victoria, the oldest, has just ended yet another engagement. Charlotte, the youngest (and most promiscuous) has no interest in settling down. Diana, the daughter most likely to do her mother proud, has managed to capitalize on her virginity by agreeing to appear in a reality show that will end in her marriage and deflowering.

Elizabeth, also known as Bliss, has deeply disappointed her mother by, not only marrying a Cuban man, but is forced to move back home with her young daughter after a messy divorce. Her desire to get her life back together, earn her PhD, and get out of her family’s home is made more complicated by the arrival of the reality show production and the different effects it has on every one’s lives. 

Imperfect Bliss is a smart, funny look at many things, including pop culture, academia, and love. This is a great addition to any summer reading list.

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