In Twenty Years by Allison Winn Scotch
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
In college, Bea, Annie, Lindy, Colin, Owen, and Catherine were thick as thieves. The group shared a house near Penn's campus and thought they would remain friends forever, no matter what. But now, nearly twenty years later, the friends barely speak. Until they receive a letter from Bea's lawyer. Their beloved Bea passed away at twenty-seven, but apparently she bought the house they shared and wants them all to gather there on her fortieth birthday. Reluctantly, they arrive, but each of the clan brings their own struggles. Annie is worried that her husband is cheating on her - a threat to the perfect life she's constructed for herself. Lindy has found the fame she wanted as a singer, but is she happy? Colin is a surgeon, but still single, as well as struggling over his past with Bea. And Owen and Catherine--now married, with Catherine overseeing a blogging empire--aren't happy at all.
I liked the premise of this book: good college friends reuniting after many years. But this one wasn't really my favorite, though it's clearly well-liked by many readers. For me, the characters were really annoying and just very unlikable. They just kept repeating over and over that Bea was dead, but I'm not sure anyone gained or learned anything from her death. They just sort of went in circles over the weekend at Penn.
Of the group, Lindy was probably my favorite. She kept me reading and her depth lent the book its most complexity, along with her various interrelationships, especially with Annie. Still, I just found myself completely frustrated with this group of characters, with their constant fighting, inability to grow from Bea's death, and endless whining. (I was also slightly bothered by the fact that, out of a group of six friends, both Catherine and Lindy had PR people (and a PR crisis that weekend) - what are the odds they'd both become that famous?)
Overall, the book is interesting, albeit heavy. If you find yourself an attachment to one of the characters, you'll enjoy it even more.
I received a copy of this novel from the publisher and Netgalley (thank you!); it is available everywhere as of 7/1.
You can read my review of Winn Scotch's novel THE THEORY OF OPPOSITES here.
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