I have never been a fan of books that seem to throw lots of high brow technical bits and pieces into a mix with an attempt at structural, understandable prose.
This book unfortunately is a very fine example of this. Here we have an intellectual couple, looking rather sour in their marriage. She is writing a report on ornithology and linguistics, which she is about to make a big public presentation of. He is a career lecturer or something similar, constantly sniping at his wife, and really unable to cope with her success, he is also convinced she is going behind his back, relationship wise. Thirdly is her father who is a borderline senile old man who is holding onto his sanity by being very outspoken and loud in a very embarrassing way to the couples detriment.
Characters were cardboard, I could not associate with them at all. Then the author is trying to impress us with her intellectual knowledge through the book. Which sometimes sounds a bit condescending. You know, when the eminent professor walks into the primary classroom and tries to explain something, and it is very much of the tone; I am superior, but I will still explain to you lot anyway. Maybe I have a chip on my shoulder, but thank God for the media of Goodreads etc for giving us the opportunity.