If you are looking for a fun, interesting read this summer, may I recommend "The First Husband" for your poolside perusal?
I really enjoyed this book. And it takes a lot for me to enjoy a book, especially one as unassuming and unpretentious as Laura Dave's new work.
Told through the voice of a travel writer who has just been dumped by her long-term boyfriend, the book chronicles the crazy rebound adventures of a woman who doesn't know who she is or what she wants--or are they rebound adventures after all?
The reader doesn't know.
This book was written by someone who clearly knows how to write. She knows which backstory is pertinent and what the reader can do without. She knows when to time reveals. She understands cliffhangers and uses them correctly and sparingly (a rarity, these days.)
I loved all the characters. The ex-boyfriend, the new husband, Annie herself, her best friend, the new husband's ex-girlfriend, the brother, both the mothers. I mean, that's a lot of characters to introduce in an engaging way, and Dave manages it with aplomb. Hell, I even liked the dog.
And because I liked all the characters so much, I found myself in an odd predicament. I didn't care what happened. I wanted to know what happened, fiercely, but whatever it was, I would have liked it the same just the same. I wanted happiness for all! This meant that I had a hard time predicting what the main character would choose or what would happen to her. So that as light and airy and cute as this book was, it had me on the edge of my seat.
Well done, Laura Dave. There's a reason you're all up in the NYT, huh?
Talk about this book over at BlogHer Book Club!
I was compensated for this BlogHer Book Club review but all opinions expressed are my own.