This is the second “reunion” book I’ve read
this year (the other written by a dear family friend and thus specifically not
reviewed here, although she is enjoying commercial success in her native Australia)
and I love the concept. This time it is a wedding between two high school sweethearts
who should have married at 21, and married other people instead. A
25-year-reunion brings them together again and destiny is set straight – and so
the high school friends return for the wedding.
There is the classic cast for such a novel –
the widow, the happily married man with his boys and a hankering for the past,
the spinster with a secret, the now enormously successful and happy gay man,
the cancer victim and the brash bully with a trophy wife – but Shreve appears
to have specifically only spent time inside three or four of the characters’ heads,
not everyone’s, which is a wise choice; any more background and I would have
felt torn around between them.
There are of course scandals to be revealed
and preconceptions to be unravelled – and a shadow from the past following all
the characters around all weekend.