I was busily enjoying the wry humour in this book when the author decided to wallop me over the head emotionally. I soon realized I'd better get used to it as this format continues throughout the volume.Yes this is a good thing. While the subject matter and a lot of the history outlined in this book are very serious it helped to not be on a constant emotional downer.I guess you could call this a saga as it outline's a good portion of the Stephanides family's recent history. I liked how Eugenides used this to slip in where and how the genetics came into effect. It made for a far more interesting read then one written like a clinical study. I will state that I found the unevenness of the writing and narration a little unsettling at times. There were a few too many fast perspective shifts as well as time shifts. I will stay quiet about the omniscient narratives though, as they did help to keep the story flowing.A truly tender coming of age story that didn't seem trite to me even once.I'm happy I didn't let the Oprah's Book Club scare me away from this one.