Monday, April 23, 2012

The Singles - Review and Giveaway

by Meredith Goldstein, Plume, April 2012

...this one will be a popular beach read this summer
This is the story of the Annapolis wedding of Bee Evans and Matt Fee (yes she will become Bee Fee) and the five guests who despite receiving a plus one invite come solo to the wedding.  Hannah, a college classmate of Beth’s is a bridesmaid.  She dreads the wedding as she will need to confront ex boyfriend Tom who dumped her.  She is hoping that Rob a college friend and old boyfriend will attend the wedding with her, but Rob the flakiest of the five solo wedding guests stays in Texas to support his dog Liz a rescue mutt with epilepsy.  Rob stays current with the wedding events through texts sent by Hannah.  Hannah’s roommate at the wedding is Vickie another college friend.  Vicki, a romance novel addict, works at an unexciting but well paying job; she is constantly depressed and travels with a social affective disorder sun lamp in a guitar case.  These three college friends are supplemented by two additional solo guests.  The bride’s uncle Joe, a divorced father is attending even though the bride’s mother would prefer he not be in attendance.  Joe is attracted to Vicki and has big plans for their relationship, plans that are not shared by Vickie.  The final character in this farce is Phil.  Phil is only attending the wedding as a favor to his mom who is ill and unable to attend.  Phil is perhaps the saddest of these characters, unable to grow up he continues to linger in a prolonged adolescence that includes sports and failed commitments and not much else. 
The adventures of these five characters through the wedding weekend are enjoyable to follow.  The story is told from alternating perspectives.  Some of the scenes are quite funny.  Hannah, on the advice of a controlling maid of honor, takes some pills to settle her nerves.  Followed by a couple of drinks Hannah’s confrontation with her ex is painfully funny.  All five of the solo guests experience character growth through this wedding weekend.  The back and forth between Hannah and Rob is very well done.  Rob, still in love with Hannah, but unable to act decisively on it, shows the most growth of all of the characters.  All of these solo guests are changed by their attendance at this wedding.  I loved the ending; it provided hope but was not an unrealistic take on life. 
This is a debut novel for Meredith Goldstein, the popular LoveLetters advice columnist from the Boston Globe and it is a good one.  You’ll love the characters and if you’ve ever gone single to a wedding you'll relate to the events in this story.   The Singles, I think will be a popular beach read this summer.  The book has been optioned for film so read it now before the movie is cast and you can compare your casting choices with the actual ones.
My gently used copy of this novel is available for giveaway, follow the instructions to the right of this box.  Giveaway ends May 1. CLOSED
I read an ARC provided by the publisher.


Zibilee said...

This does sound unique and funny, and likely, it breaks out of the women's fiction genre just a little bit with its odd cast of characters. This was a really great review, and I would love the chance to read it, so please do include me in your giveaway! I also follow your blog.


Lukey Here said...

Sounds like an entertaining read. Thank you for the giveaway


petite said...

Many thanks for this lovely giveaway which sounds unique and captivating. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I enjoyed the review and learning about this interesting book. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com