Sunday, March 26, 2017

The Arrangement (by Sarah Dunn)

A suburban satire that straddles the line between litfic and chicklit; not sure which side I would place this on. Lucy and Owen, our main characters, decide to try having an open marriage for six months. Complications ensue.

The part of this that really didn't work for me is the ending. (Spoilers ahead.) There are hints throughout that The Arrangement will blow up in their faces and lead to tragic consequences. And it kind of does. Then we immediately flash forward by 15 months and the reset button has been totally hit on all the consequences, and now everything's fine again. Stakes completely undermined. It soured me on the entire rest of the book.  Also I did not enjoy the little epigraphs that began each chapter. On the nose and added nothing.

As a suburban satire it works, and is at times amusingly recognizeable, but doesn't hold a candle to Maria Semple's recent novel. Still, it's an entertaining and naughty novel that goes down easy. So to speak.

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