The Family is the story of two girls who became best friends. This seemed inevitable as their fathers were best friends and inevitably, so were their mothers. They were family, but in more ways than one. Their fathers were also part of “The Family” in the organized crime sense of the word. When Antonia’s father wanted out of the family, Sofia’s father chose loyalty to “The Family” over loyalty to his best friend. Antonia’s mother sunk deep into grief leaving Antonia even more dependent on Sofia and her family.

The character of their friendship evolves over time as their very different personalities lead them in diverging directions in high school,  but adulthood and marriage bring them back together each of them helping each other in sometimes harrowing circumstances.

I loved The Family for many reasons. The characters were complex and intriguing. Sofia and Antonia were so different and it could have been so easily about the dominant, vibrant Sofia and the passive, subdue Antonia, but Naomi Krupitsky did not fall into that trap, allowing Antonia to have a different kind of strength. It was interesting to see the machinations of organized crime during the Depression and World War II, adapting their business model to changing circumstances.

Most of all, the language of The Family is entrancing. Krupitsky writes with an elegant formality that makes reading her book like seeing language a new way. There is such a deep understanding of humanity coupled with a fresh way of writing that every page was a joy for anyone who loves the supple and subtle English language.

The Family will be released on November 2nd. I received an e-galley from the publisher through NetGalley.