Book Review: “Three for a Girl” by Kevin Brennan

This is the kind of book I’d normally never read. It’s about a 17-year-old girl, LeeAnn Heartney, planning to run away from her incredibly dysfunctional family. Her mother, still devastated from the death of her youngest child, spends all day drinking and watching Watergate hearings. Her father barely speaks and works the night shift as a security guard, sleeping during the day. And her younger sister is, well, going through all the drama associated with teenage girls in an environment ill-suited to help her deal with it.

Add in to this mix the three ambulance personnel who rent the upstairs rooms from the Heartneys, and you have a intensely emotionally fraught situation.

As I said, I’d normally never read a book like this. I don’t like family dramas. But Kevin Brennan is a master of the craft, so when I see his name on it, you can bet I’ll read it, no matter what genre it is.

Brennan doesn’t disappoint. The prose is gorgeous, as always, and the way he crafts the setting, right down to details like who was testifying at the hearings on a given day, is equally masterful. The tension builds slowly, then explodes suddenly at the end into a gripping conclusion.

It’s beautifully written, perfectly paced, and impeccably crafted. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys literary fiction. Or even if you don’t like it, at least give it a try. Brennan is a gifted writer and his work deserves to be widely read and recognized.


    1. It’s not explained in too much detail, but basically he is born with a heart defect, and the surgery to try to save him fails.

What's your stake in this, cowboy?