We are not Ourselves by Matthew Thomas: A Book Review

I can never have enough of “chasing the American dream story,” and with this book I had a front row seat into the lives of Irish Immigrants three generations down the line.


Hardcover, 620 pages
Published August 19th 2014 by Simon & Schuster
About the Book

We Are Not Ourselves is a multigenerational portrait of the Irish American Leary family.

Born in 1941, Eileen Tumulty is raised by her Irish immigrant parents in Woodside, Queens, in an apartment where the mood swings between heartbreak and hilarity, depending on whether guests are over and how much alcohol has been consumed. 
When Eileen meets Ed Leary, a scientist whose bearing is nothing like those of the men she grew up with, she thinks she’s found the perfect partner to deliver her to the cosmopolitan world she longs to inhabit. They marry, and Eileen quickly discovers Ed doesn’t aspire to the same, ever bigger, stakes in the American Dream. 

Eileen encourages her husband to want more: a better job, better friends, a better house, but as years pass it becomes clear that his growing reluctance is part of a deeper psychological shift. An inescapable darkness enters their lives, and Eileen and Ed and their son Connell try desperately to hold together a semblance of the reality they have known, and to preserve, against long odds, an idea they have cherished of the future. 

Read more reviews on: Goodreads

My rating: heartheartheartheart

In this book the author tells the story as it is and in his own way, you delve into the lives of the character each with their own dreams and ambitions trying to lead a better life than those who came before them and struggling under the burden of this.