I listened to the audiobook narrated by Tom Hanks and I think it made all the difference. The story is narrated from the boy Danny’s perspective whose boyish attitude is as petulant as it is endearing.
I enjoyed the way the author placed the Dutch House at the center of this story and yet it is in the literal background of the characters Maeve and Danny’s lives for the most part. Their lives revolve around the Dutch House, grow apart, and ultimately return to it. The Dutch House starts as being a gorgeous object of sentimental value, it goes on to become the victim of neglect and inevitably a source of grief and finally an opportunity for reconciliation for the family members.
The relationship between the father and his two children is raw and problematic for everyone. It is a story about a dysfunctional family, how its members can turn out alright in the end, albeit requiring an unimaginable measure of understanding and forgiveness.