Check It Out: Spoonbenders

Oct 3, 2017

Today, I’m recommending a quirky work of domestic fiction called Spoonbenders by Daryl Gregory.

Teddy Telemachus is a charming con man with a gift for sleight of hand and some shady underground associates. In need of cash, he tricks his way into a classified government study about telekinesis and its possible role in intelligence gathering. There he meets Maureen McKinnon, and it’s not just her piercing blue eyes that leave Teddy forever charmed, but her mind—Maureen is a genuine psychic of immense and mysterious power. After a whirlwind courtship, they marry, have three gifted children, and become the Amazing Telemachus Family, performing astounding feats across the country. Irene is a human lie detector. Frankie can move objects with his mind. And Buddy, the youngest, can see the future. Then one night tragedy leaves the family shattered.

Thirty years later, the Telemachuses are not so amazing. Irene’s a single mom whose ear for truth makes it hard to hold down a job, much less a relationship. Frankie’s in serious debt to his dad’s old mob associates. And Buddy has completely withdrawn into himself and has bizarrely begun digging a hole in the backyard. To make matters worse, the CIA has come knocking, looking to see if there’s any magic left in the once-great Telemachus clan.

And there is: Irene’s 14-year-old son Matty has just had his first out-of-body experience. But he hasn’t told anyone, even though his newfound talent might just be what his family needs to save themselves—if it doesn’t tear them apart in the process.

Cleverly plotted and full of fast-paced adventure, Spoonbenders is quite the unique take on the traditional family drama.

Check out Spoonbenders and other engaging works of domestic fiction like it at the Sioux City Public Library.

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Check It Out is supported by Avery Brothers