When young Janie Pike dies in a tragic accident, she leaves behind a family numbed with grief and torn with guilt and recrimination. In this compassionate and haunting novel Anne Tyler explores how each member of the family learns to face the future in their own way.
The Tin Can Tree follows some of the residents of the small Larksville town after the funeral of six year old Janie. Along with Mr & Mrs Pike other characters in the story include Janie's ten year old brother Simon, his cousin Joan and their neighbours James and Ansel.
I found the character of Ansel really annoying and I'm not sure if I was supposed to or meant to feel sorry for him. I wanted James to stand up to him and stop putting his own life on hold to help care and look after his older brother.
This was only Anne Tyler's second published novel and although nowhere near her best is still worth reading if you're a fan of her work. After all, an off form Tyler book is still a lot more enjoyable than others by less talented authors, but I wouldn't recommend it to start with.