Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Wedding in December by Anita Shreve

Release Date: October 2005

A Wedding in December is by esteemed novelist Anita Shreve, also the author of The Pilot's Wife (1998).

During the December of 2001 after the World Trade Center event, a group of old high school friends reunite for the first time in decades to attend a wedding between 2 of their classmates. Over the course of a weekend, we learn about the internal struggles within a few of the troubled adults; especially those affected most by the death of their beloved classmate who died years ago shortly before their high school graduation. By the end of the weekend, each character has experienced a revelation of their own that helps them to have a better perspective on their lives.

A Wedding in December is one of the most impressionistic character-based novels I have ever read, and incredibly engaging at that. The novel tastefully leads up to the details behind the tragedy that befell the deceased high school classmate and dabbles into romance between the adult characters at just the right moments.

A Wedding in December also contains a novel within a novel on the subject of the Halifax Explosion, written by one of the core characters named Agnes. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the incident, the Halifax Explosion occurred in Nova Scotia during the winter of 1917 when a cargo ship loaded with explosives blew up in Halifax Harbour. Those who were watching from the windows of their homes were permanently blinded or injured from the window glass flying into their eyes at the time of the explosion. Agnes writes her own intriguing character-driven story about this incident during her stay at the inn where the wedding and reunion takes place.

The ending of A Wedding in December is timed appropriately; in fact, it's one of the few novels in which you are ready for the book to end when it actually does end, without any accompanying negative feelings or thoughts.

If you enjoyed A Wedding in December, you will also like reading Shreve's The Last Time They Met (2001), All He Ever Wanted (2003), and Where or When (1993).

Read our review here on Anita Shreve's Body Surfing (2007):
Dreamworld Book Reviews - Body Surfing

Click on the pictures below to read about Anita Shreve's novels in more detail on

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