Virtue explores the vulnerability and randomness of human existence through the lives of Tom and Hannah Holder, each of whom are grappling with midlife crises. Hannah is sick of being a stay-at-home mom marooned in a rural college town, her teenage daughter, Madison, is the subject of anti-LGBTQ bullying, and her teenage son, Dillon, is failing at school and having run-ins with the law. Her husband Tom, a philosophy professor, once supported her plea for change—a return to Boston that would give their kids a fresh start and her the chance to finally finish her law degree—but now his life is unraveling as he struggles to fend off attacks on his career from the college president, reconcile with his estranged, cancer-stricken father and confront a dark, hidden past.
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This is the perfect book for this time in quarantine from Covid-19.. It's of-the-moment issues will make you want to order the book that Tom has written, which is very critical of Donald Trump. Tom, a professor of philosophy at a Maine university, is trying to be true to himself while battling with a closed-minded college president. His students love him, but he runs into difficulty with the administrator over his popular weekly blog and his anti-Trump sentiments that are not popular with the university's largest donor. What could be more contemporary.
Written in alternating chapters by Tom and his wife Hannah, you see a marriage in trouble because of a lack in openness and communication. There is also the alienation between Tom and his father that has kept them from speaking for 30 decades.
Tom and Hannah have two teen age children who are dealing with coming out for one and drinking and hanging out for the other. Hannah's decision to attend law school and move, with her children, to Boston, creates more problems. Tom decides to see his father, who is dying of cancer.
How Tom becomes more introspective and communicative as a result of this bears the story along to its conclusion. It's amusing, entertaining, and fun to read while social distancing.
The title and the cover of this book caught my eye, as did the blurb underneath. I like stories that explore real human lives, the way we respond to our circumstances and what goes on in our minds. Virtue by John Moot is the story of a family of four: Tom, Hannah, Madison and Dillon. The story is told from the points of view of Tom and Hannah, the main characters.
Virtue is not the most exciting read. I don't know how to classify it, really. You will enjoy it if you're a person who likes to read about difficult life circumstances and how people deal with them.
I received an ARC from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest opinion. All opinions expressed are my own.
Virtue is a novel that is told by Tom and his wife Hanna alternately, I liked that the novel discusses family issues that may face any of us, and those issues are mostly because the world outside puts pressure on the children regardless of how much Tom and Hanna try to encourage their kids to be better, strong, and stand up for themselves. The part that I connected the most with is the one that discusses the gap that happens over time between man and wife and that suddenly people realise that they are facing a different person... I could tell that this was the main idea of the novel just looking at the cover and it drew me in. I thought some chapters were rushed and some issues were unrealistically resolved easily and well... fast! But over all I enjoyed it and would give it 🌟🌟🌟/5
This was a thought-provoking book. It was a realistic portrait of marriage and parenting and the moral and ethical issues that result from the work/life balance. I enjoyed the honesty and confusion and misunderstandings that are reflective of real life. The journey of the characters was satisfying even if it wasn't a traditional happily ever after.
I received an ARC of this novel from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
A philosophy professor forgives his father and cares for him during cancer treatments.
This book ended up being so much more than I expected it to be. I was very impressed.
The issues and themes are so contemporary that at times I wondered if I were actually reading a work of fiction. The characters were engaging and really felt like real people.
I really enjoyed getting two different narrators; Tom and his wife Hannah. It meant I never got bored, and sometimes I would start to getting a bit annoyed with one of the characters then it would switch which I really appreciated.
It was the perfect lock-down read.
Genre: Literary Fiction
Publisher: Roads End Books
Pub. Date: August 4, 2020
The media department for this novel reached out to me, via email, on reading and reviewing this novel. Unfortunately, I was disappointed in this book. First, the genre is not literary fiction as marked. “Virtue” is more a contemporary family drama intertwined with politics. Secondly, and this is my own entire fault, the email reads, “Virtue is similar to An American Marriage by Tayari Jones.” But, I was thinking the novel, “American Wife” by Curtis Sittenfeld, which is modeled after the life of Laura Bush as recorded in Ann Gerhart’s biography “The Perfect Wife: The Life and Choices of Laura Bush.”
“Virtue” revolves around a marriage in trouble and their struggling teenage children. The wife wants change. She is sick of being an at-home mother. The husband is a college philosophy professor who is writing a political book. The President of the college wants him to tone down his political views, for fear of losing donors. He refuses and may lose his job. Since a good chunk of the plot revolves around politics, I didn’t realize my mistake until I started to write this review. Possibly, if I went in knowing I was about to read a family drama, which I can enjoy, I may have enjoyed the tale more than I did. The novel has some thought provoking elements. Still, I do not usually care for novels that end neat enough to be wrapped up in a bow, as this one does.
This is the story of family dynamics told in the persons of the husband and wife, Tom and Hannah. They have 2 teenage children. Tom teaches philosophy at a college in Maine and Hannah is a stay-at-home mom. Tom is writing a book. Tom is not happy with the college administration. Hannah is not happy with her current life. She wants to go to law school. She applies to schools in Boston, and decides to move down to the area with their children, while Tom stays on in Maine. They are not happy with this either. What will make them happy?
I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
I love discovering new authors and this book surprised me in a good way. This story revolves around a family who find themselves questioning their value, their purpose and the missed opportunities as they assess their lives.
Tom is a professor who is in the process of writing a novel that he is seeking feedback from his peers so he can be in the good graces of the school's new president. He is aware that the president does not like him and it could impact his tenure. The feedback he receives requires him to compromise the content which would alter his point of view. He is beginning to feel resentment but doesn't have the courage to stand up for his beliefs. His wife, Hannah, wants to finish law school as their kids are older and she is feeling as if she has not lived up to her potential and she, too, is feeling resentment.
Tom and Hannah can't seem to communicate what they need or what is important to them so their relationship begins to suffer. Their kids are having their own crisis which adds another layer of pressure for both of them. Tom receives news about his father, who he has not spoken to in 20 years, but knows he must see him. This reunion ends up being a salve to the many issues that plague Tom and his family.
The characters in this story were easy to connect with and the author did a great job making them so likable in the process. The ending was perfect and provided the perfect moment of healing with imperfect characters. I loved this.