The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer.
It’s been a long time since I blogged, and a long time since I read this book. I loved loved loved it. It was everything I want the memoirs I’ve been reading (and not enjoying as much as I wanted to) to be. Maybe I should dump the memoirs and get back on the fiction bandwagon.
I wish I had blogged about this right away, when I still had the book (Kindle version) checked out of the library. I know that I highlighted a ton of wonderful passages, but of course now I have no idea what they were.
What I do know: It was this amazing tale about how life really fucking works. When we are adolescents, we all think we are special and talented and wonderful, and that we’re going to make it big in the world. But most of us don’t. Most of us make it small, and some of us don’t make it at all.
This group of friends (the titular “interestings”) meet at a summer performing arts camp. There’s the beautiful one and the funny one and the handsome one (brother to the beautiful one) and the dancer and the animator. And they all love and believe in each other.
They remain friends, mostly, throughout their lives. I loved the female friendship at the center of the book, between the beautiful and successful girl and the one who never quite made it, who settled for a smaller life, and who had to deal with jealousy.
I loved that the people were complicated. The beautiful girl is an avid feminist. Except when her brother is accused of rape. For some reason she never for a second believes the charges, though her brother is not such a wonderful kind person that it’s unimaginable. She cuts the other girl, formerly one of the interestings, out of her life. It’s this major blindspot, and it’s oh-so-real. And I love that secretly her husband hates this about her and holds a grudge about it for many, many years. I mean, ouch. But yes.
I wish I could say I ran off and immediately read everything else by Meg Wolitzer. In truth, I went on a bit of a reading hiatus. I started planning for fall classes, and I also just started doing other stuff. Maybe I read the perfect book and wasn’t sure where to go from there.