Torea Frey

Editor, writer, photographer, observer on the street.

Mr. Peanut, Adam Ross

This psychological mystery is probably good for people aching to read something in a vein similar to Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl; it's nowhere near as neatly packaged and tightly woven as Flynn's book, but it does fuss around about the joys and discontents of marriage, with a murder (or a few) at the center of the story. 

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There are several overlapping narratives to Mr. Peanut, and to be truthful, I'm not exactly sure I grasped what the real story was, given a structure in which the narrator was writing a novel and that novel began to overlap with his life; sorting out the threads was difficult. That said, a bit of a mindbender is good every now and again, and the ideas in Ross's writing are intriguing.

One theme that I thought was explored rather well was restlessness, a certain yearning for something beyond the day-to-day:  "People think of travel, of movement, as a kind of reprieve from life," a man is counseled. "But they're wrong. Movement isn't a reprieve. There is no reprieve. Movement is our permanent state." And yet where does all that movement lead? "I want to arrive," another character says. "I want to be finished. I want to be done with the person I was." Trying too hard to craft a coherent narrative arc is just as futile as imagining you can momentarily exempt yourself from the world; best to just live and let live?