Tara Yellen

Books Reviews Tara Yellen
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Tara Yellen

Getting nowhere fast

In the film Waking Life, Louis Mackey poses this conundrum: “Which is the most universal human characteristic: fear or laziness?”

The answer is both, and in this, her debut novel, Tara Yellen shows us how easily—and inevitably—we get stuck in our ruts.

The employees of the Almost Home Bar and Grill are no exception. Instead of pursuing personal ambitions, they indulge in fantasies while perpetuating the behaviors that keep them down. They could do this and should do that, they think. But they never do.

Energies misplaced, they mistake the longings of the flesh for the longings of the soul—and seek to fulfill them by drinking, smoking, coupling, thieving and generally playing out a whole slew of self-destructive—or just plain futile—debaucheries.

This book is about a universal affliction—the sense of restlessness, misdirection and discontent we feel, even after we settle for the familiarity of those feelings.