Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Stacy Halloran has lived most of her life in 1950s-era housing development Arboria Park. But her beloved neighborhood may not survive much longer.
Despite her parents’ entreaties to “stay in the yard where it’s safe,” the Park is where young Stacy roams in quest of “real life.” Through her wanderings, she learns about the area’s agricultural history; meets people from backgrounds different than her own; watches her siblings develop interracial and same-sex relationships; helps launch the local punk-rock scene; and finally, settles as a wife and mother. As the neighborhood declines (along with her relationship with her mother), Stacy considers moving on to rescue herself and her daughter. But then a massive highway project threatens the ever-resilient Park—and it’s Stacy’s task to rally family, friends, and neighbors to save it.
This book totally hit the reading spot for me this past week. It starts in 1960 with Stacy narrating (she’s in Kindergarten), and it continues to make its way to the year 2011, alternating narrators (other family members) and years. I liked this setup. It allowed me to get a really good sense of who these people became as time passed and they matured.
The story revolves around a sense of home: what that means for everyone and how different it can be yet how strongly it can pull them together in times of struggle or need. It was really interesting, and sometimes emotional, to see the different situations that kept bringing the Hallorans back to Arboria Park. It made me think of all the reasons I go “back home”.
While the sense of home is what most resonated with me, Arboria Park deals with a wide range of issues. I think it would make a great conversation-starter for people who enjoy buddy reading or are looking for a new book club selection.
Thank you to Booksparks for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.