An incredibly written book, this took over 20 hours to listen to. I can't imagine what the actual book weighs.
On Beauty is a story of the Belsey family and the Kipps family. The Belseys are Howard, a white professor at Wellington, his wife Kiki, a large full of life African/American and their 3 childeren, Jerome, Levi and Zora. Howard is an academic enemy of Monty Kipps, all well as long as oceans separated them. But the Kippses end up moving to Wellington, outside of Boston, so Monty can teach at Howard's university.
What happens between and around all of this is a story of people coming together while other people are falling apart. The only really likable character, in my opinion, is Kiki. While everyone around her is making horrible decisions, she's trying to hold everything together. When the Kippses end up moving down the street from them, Kiki befriends Carlene Kipps, the matriarch of the family, who is also very ill.
There's too much to give away here, but I won't. It made it a better story having everything uncovered to me and I hope others can experience it as well.