Case Histories by Kate Atkinson is terrific. "You'll laugh; you'll cry" is a terrible cliche, but it's true. I found myself getting quite misty-eyed at times, but at others I was literally laughing out loud. Atkinson has a wonderful ear for dialogue, and also a sense of the absurd. Her characters are sincerely likeable - Jackson, Julia, Amelia, Theo, the strange girl with the yellow hair - they are all memorable, real, lumpy, three-dimensional figures. The connections between them never seem forced; you just think about the way we all seem to have those few degrees of separation from everyone we meet... yet there's the poignancy of the "cases," the lost girls, those who are left behind and have to live with their loss. It's a rich, intricate, funny, sad, clever novel. What more can I say?