I Know This Much is True had been on my bookshelf (along with most of Wally Lamb’s other books!) for several years, but the fact that it is 900 pages long meant that kept getting pushed down the pile.
I finally decided that it had sat there for too long and so made the effort to start it. I am really pleased that I did as it is a fantastic book.
I Know This Much is True follows Dominick, one half of a pair of twins growing up in a small town in Connecticut. Dominick’s twin brother, Thomas, develops paranoid schizophrenia and we see how this affects Dominick’s life.
It seems strange to sum up a 900 page book in so few words, but the plot is quite simple. Instead of a complex plot we get a complete insight into how Dominick’s thoughts and feelings change throughout his life. We see him struggle to juggle love for his brother with frustration and guilt and by the end of the book I felt as though I could predict his actions. I don’t think I’ve ever known a character in literature so well.
The book gripped me from the very start. Dominick’s complex relationships and inner thoughts touched my heart.
It took me over a month to finish the book, but it never dragged. My only complaint was that the story-within-a-story didn’t really work for me. I loved Dominick’s voice so much that any deviation had me itching to get back to his narrative.
Many people moan that the ending was too neat, but I loved the way everything was resolved. It would seem strange to learn so much about one person and then not know what happened to them.
Overall I thought that this was a moving insight into the way mental illness affects the family of the sufferer. Highly recommended.
Thoughts of other bloggers:
It’s a complex, deep, and moving book that you won’t soon forget. Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin’?
But most of all, just too many awful things happen to Dominick that it stops being believable…. Regular Rumination
…. requires patience to wade through, but is well worth the journey. Caribous Mom
Did you enjoy I Know This Much is True?
Which Wally Lamb book do you recommend I read next?