Telling the story of a man who inexplicably and uncontrollably walks, The Unnamed by Joshua Farris, is one of the more original narratives I’ve read in a while. At it’s heart, it’s a love story about coping with illness in a family. The difference in this story is that the main character’s illness cannot be explained by a physical or a psychological ailment. He simply walks and cannot stop until his body becomes so exhausted he collapses into a deep sleep.
How his wife and daughter deal with this phenomenon, shows a great amount of patience, faith and love. And how the main character eventually deals with his illness shows more of the same, although it may not be as obvious that the route he takes is ultimately meant to help his family move on. It’s a sad story and it’s a meaningful one.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, through the tears and the heartache it took to read it. The frustrations felt by the reader and the characters in the book are very realistic. The “what if’s” that we all feel from time to time are fully expressed in a way that’s compelling and heartbreaking. But perseverance, once again, prevails because of the love that exists between this family. I highly recommend checking this book out as well as Joshua Ferris’s other novel “Then we Came to the End.”