Review: Matrimony


This is the love story of Julian and Mia. Meeting as freshman, we watch them grow up and face life’s failures and successes over the next 15 years.
Mia’s mother is diagnosed with breast cancer during their senior year, she is afraid her mother may not survive to experience life’s milestones and Mia asks Julian to marry her, wanting her mother to attend their wedding.

The story follows their careers, Mia aspirations to get a PhD and Julian’s desire to write a novel. Josh Henkin is an author and a professor himself, he writes about a subject near to his heart and as I read the pages I really connected with Julian and Mia. The storyline keeps evolving and the journey is a welcome one. This book is comforting, life is messy but worth living.

Matrimony is our March MMBC selection (watch for an author Q&A and online discussion early March)

Type: Fiction, 304 pages, Trade paperback

Synopsis:
It's the fall of 1986, and Julian Wainwright, an aspiring writer, arrives at Graymont College in New England. Here he meets Carter Heinz, with whom he develops a strong but ambivalent friendship, and beautiful Mia Mendelsohn, with whom he falls in love. Spurred on by a family tragedy, Julian and Mia's love affair will carry them to graduation and beyond, taking them through several college towns, over the next fifteen years. Starting at the height of the Reagan era and ending in the new millennium, Matrimony is a stunning novel of love and friendship, money and ambition, desire and tensions of faith. It is a richly detailed portrait of what it means to share a life with someone-to do it when you're young, and to try to do it afresh on the brink of middle age.

Reviews:
“Elicits a passionate investment in the fate of its characters – truly an up-all-night read.” – The Washington Post

“Beautifully render(s) the give and take, back and forth of marriage over the long haul.” – The New Observer

1 comment

  1. I really liked this book--I found it to be a very real examination of relationships (between parent and child, man and woman, siblings, friends). I did feel like the story got bogged later in the book when discussing breast cancer (it read a little like a brochure to me), but otherwise, it really moved along nicely. My favorite relationship was that between Julian & Carter.

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