THE UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF SCONES
The characters in the 44 Scotland Street series are all incredibly real and human; each has foibles and idiosyncrasies and each is flawed beyond measure. That said, the pacing drags, and there's not much action. Even so, each character is capable of making the reader care deeply for their story, which is hard
to do in a series that essentially is a chronicling of daily life and has no true denouement.
Bertie, the precocious 6-year old, is still trying to avoid his overbearing mother -- this time by joining the Cub Scouts. Bruce confronts his own narcissism. Angus and Domenica become embroiled in the circus surrounding the theft of a blue Spode teacup, while Matthew and Elspeth adjust to married life. Life at 44 Scotland Street goes forth as always, with the laughter and heartbreak we've come to expect from the series. (ANCHOR, Jan., 368 pp., $15.00)