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The Romantics

3.02  ·  Rating Details ·  1,595 Ratings  ·  221 Reviews

Laura and Lila were college roommates--one brooding and Jewish, the other the epitome of golden WASP-dom. Now it's ten years later, a day before Lila's wedding to Laura’s former boyfriend, and as the guests arrive, Laura finds herself the only one not coupled
Paperback, 288 pages
Published August 31st 2010 by Picador (first published July 8th 2008)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Feb 21, 2010 Natalie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2010
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 23, 2010 Laura rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
A disappointing read that had none of the charm of Galt Niederhoffer's first book, A Taxonomy of Barnacles. In this group of college friends gathering for a wedding, I expected to find at least one relatable or redeeming character, but none of the characters were appealing and the individuals in the group simply blended together from lack of personality or distinguishing characteristics. It seemed that Laura, the maid of honor who still pines after the groom and is the only Jew in a group of WAS ...more
Aug 31, 2010 Carie rated it liked it
(Yes, I posted a copy of this on my blog.)

This is an interesting book, and not necessarily in a good way. A group of nine college friends - best friends - reunite 10 years later in Maine for a wedding. Their definition of friend is vastly different from yours and mine. Tom and Lila are getting married. Laura is the maid of honor, Lila's best friend, AND Tom's ex-girlfriend. All the other couples are interconnected as well, married or engaged to each other, each having dated another member of th
Melinda Worfolk
Sep 13, 2015 Melinda Worfolk rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, 2015
I was fascinated by the description of American upper class WASP culture! It's just so foreign to me, so I liked reading about the goings-on from the point of view of Laura, the outsider. I could just imagine her feeling bullied into being maid of honour, while silently seething. Oh the dysfunction. I did have a good laugh reading about the terrible speeches at the rehearsal dinner, also--talk about secondhand cringe.

I liked the plot and protagonist well enough, but occasionally there were clun
Nov 29, 2009 Kati rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it. Couldn't put it down. Did not love the ending, which is the only reason it didn't get 5 stars.

You know what? I read this months ago. The more I think about it, the less I liked it. The characters are interesting, though the premise is worn out. A group of friends reunites years after college for a wedding of some of their gang. Naturally the bride is a perfectly WASPy blonde while her totally ethnic brunette Jewish BFF is the maid of honor. The blonde bride is perfection, while the eth
Jul 02, 2011 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really like The Romantics. It was an unexpected story...I was surprised by the ending and all the unresolved things that were left in the air...
The characters are real, they have flaws, like everybody, but that is what makes them memorable. Yes, they are kinda selfish and arrogant, but that's why the story is different from others.
The only thing that I didn't like was the fact that they showed us all negative things in their relationships as friends, but they didn't show the good parts... and
Ayla (I'm not here)
Jan 02, 2014 Ayla (I'm not here) rated it it was ok
i only gave it 2 stars because i enjoyed some of it

men are all over the world so don't date your best friend's ex, i got board reading this from the beginning

and the ending...... huh i wouldn't call it ending actually 'cause nothing happened

Aug 03, 2011 Marissa rated it really liked it
I want to be clear that I, as an English major, love this books because it mockingly shows English majors who are constantly looking for the perfect person to say, "YOU UNDERSTAND ME." Plus, I'm intrigued by preppies.

Galt Niederhoffer presents us with a group of graduated Yalies who have left college and...well, not done too much except had crappy, incestuous relationships among the same group of college friends. Somehow I find this way less annoying than I did in my own college group. Few of t
Sep 03, 2010 els rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
wow. blew through this book. this book is sort of like getting an entire season of felicity or dawson's creek or something in one novel. and i sort of put it on par with that kind of story telling/setting. incestuous group of privileged white friends who are constantly stabbing each other in the back get together for the wedding of their two most lauded/hated members. it was fun, in the same way that marathon watching gossip girl is fun, but hardly profound. and that was why i had soooo much tro ...more
Carmen Rivera
Feb 15, 2012 Carmen Rivera rated it really liked it
Despite negative reviews, The Romantics, by Galt Niederhoffer was a joy to read.

The story follows seven college friends who reunite at a friend's wedding ten years after graduating from Yale. Lila, the bride, and her maid of honor, Laura, have two things keeping them together: their frenemy-type friendship and their love for the groom, Tom. And to add a little more spice to this dramatic book, Tom, who also happens to be the ex-boyfriend of Laura, is having doubts of getting married.

Yes, the c
Aug 10, 2010 Leigh rated it really liked it
I know lots of people have panned this book as not bring too great, but I really enjoyed it. Sarcasm and cynicism are abundant in these characters and I personally loved that. Maybe that's because I'm a little cynical, but hey. I loved being inside the minds of so many different people and on some small level related to their phase of life. Being out of college for ten years is an awkward and often overlooked spot. While in some ways your life has taken off and you've experienced a lot, life isn ...more
Jun 29, 2015 Diana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I saw the movie a couple of years ago and fell in love with it. Couldn't get enough of it and, until recently, I learned it was based off a book and simply had to get a hold of it. Partial reason being that the movie's ending left a lot to be desired and I hoped that the book would have a much clearer or better ending and I can defiantly say I was disappointed. The book's ending left me even more confused but enough of that.

The book itself was very difficult to read because of it's narrative cho
Jul 15, 2008 Kerry rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not sure why people think that sad love stories are somehow less cliche than happy ones. This story, about a group of Yale-ys, old college friends who aren't really friends, is a bit depressing and it's outlook on love and friendship frequently bleak.

Moreover narrative style - the story is written in 3rd person omniscient - is terribly confusing with so many different characters, all of them less then likeable.
Aug 11, 2009 Nicole rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
A quick read about a group of college friends that reunite at a posh newengland wedding. Drama ensues between the friends after the rehearsal dinner and you find that their perfect lives are full of flaws, deception and bitterness. The characters were shallow and a bit pathetic. The ending was even worse. A movie based on this book is in production. I admit, I will have to see the film when it is available on dvd.
Aug 14, 2010 Mae rated it it was ok
One of those books where the movie will probably be better than the book. The author is a movie producer, so I guess it's no shock. Niederhoffer is clearly writing about a culture she knows a lot about (Waspy New England), but I find it kind of interesting she went to Harvard yet the book is about Yale alum.
Nov 18, 2009 Phil rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A throw away novel about an incestuous group of college friends who reunite years later in Maine for a wedding. The characters weren’t particularly great; the story wasn’t particularly great; the writing wasn’t particularly great; but I still didn’t hate it. I guess I have a high tolerance for low culture.
Maureen Flatley
Aug 08, 2008 Maureen Flatley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: April Wanner, Martha Frankel
Another literary novel from the author of The Taxonomy of Barnacles. Niederhoffer is a new wave Laurie Colwin with her precious, upper class characters. This was a great beach read that I finished in one sitting. Not as complex as her earlier work but still a page turner.
May 08, 2009 Nicole rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either. I had a hard time feeling any sympathy or connection to any of the "stuck-up" so-called "friends" in the novel. It made an ok summer beach read, but it seemed more like chick-lit than a literary work.
Dec 15, 2010 JudgyK rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like your books to have a clearly-defined ending, this is not the book for you. Don't even start it. Because it will suck you in with characters and drama and the promise of a gigantic impending conflict- and then you'll never find out the resolution.

Here’s where reviews go wrong. I really, seriously, LOVED this book. Until the ending. I really, seriously, HATED the ending. Had it ended differently (and I don’t necessarily care what sort of differently, just DIFFERENTLY), it would absolut
Apr 15, 2013 Candy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: heart-ed-it
This book is a great rendition of a modern Jane Austen novel for young adults with an inside peek into the divisions that money and social class pervades and inflicts upon the nature of friendships. Lovely all around for its insights into the priviledged WASP culture yet refreshing for its realistic view about the dynamics we all go through in relating to one another, no matter the type of relationship that's initially and innocently established. The characters Laura and Lila are the Oxford defi ...more
Anthony Ashley
Apr 28, 2011 Anthony Ashley rated it liked it
Was difficult to get into this story - not that it's not incredibly well-written, but because the author, Galt Niederboffer, insists on her readers getting to know every unflattering facet of each member of this dysfunctional wedding party - from the college friends who've all dated, kissed, or mated with each other in a culturally gender-appropriate fashion to the family that is so WASP that you anticipate seeing a piece of the Mayflower's masthead preserved and mounted on a plaque in the summe ...more
Jun 22, 2012 Abbie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know what everyone else's problem with this was; I thought it was wonderful.

Now of course, I have my complaints about this book. It was kind of like the dark version of South of Broad (not that the plot was darker, mind you, merely that I liked it less). It lacked the love of that book, and I cannot understand why people with such vile feelings toward each other would stay together.

But. I love the realism of this book (though the coke did scare me just a smidgeon). I love the extraneous
Jul 25, 2011 Heather rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club, my-library
"I didn't hate this book but I certainly did not love it. I was pleased with the first few pages I read as I visioned the beautiful ocean front home where the novel takes place. However, it quickly took a turn for the worse. The first half of the book was so darn slow! I really wasn't interested in learning every single detail about each characters past. After about 100 pages the story finally started and by that point I almost didn't care. But I continued reading because I had already invested ...more
Well I should probably start off by saying this isn't really my style of book. I have a wide selection of books that I like but for me this just didn't do it. I found the characters whiny, and childish, I think that was the point but I found it detracted from the story. I didn't care about the characters. There was a wide diversity of traits each character had, but I never felt drawn to any of them, especially the three leads. Then which end did it take? This is a story I would have like closer ...more
Aug 22, 2010 Brittany rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kristin (Kritters Ramblings)
Well - an interesting read. I picked up this book initially because I saw the movie would be coming out and nothing is more frustrating than a ruined book after seeing the movie. I would much rather ruin the movie! It was a good read, not excellent, but good.

I think my main point of frustration was after reading such a great push pull about whether Tom would end up with Lila or Laura - the ending left me more than hanging. I can not believe how I felt when it ended, I have not been th
I was looking forward to reading this book and in the end I was so disappointed. I found the first chapter to be the most interesting of all nineteen, the description of the character that the author used really set the mood and I could picture every little thing. However, it soon became dull and too many characters were introduced at the same time, making me lose track of who was who and who was with whom. The writing then became too descriptive and it lacked interest. The author just described ...more
Sep 20, 2011 Sherry rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Let's all be clear that this author, Ms. Niederhoffer, STOLE her key and many minor plot points from Emily Giffin's "Something Borrowed." It just so happens that I had recently read "Something Borrowed" (a chore, in and of itself, let me tell you!) and as I read this book, "The Romantics," I could not believe the similarities. Ms. Giffin should sue. I would have questioned a little deeper, but this book was written a full four years after "Something Borrowed." My only problem with myself in the ...more
a story about a group of college friends who reunite for a wedding in new england. laura & lila were roommates and best friends, even when tom broke up with laura and began dating lila, who he is now marrying. but he and laura have never really fallen out of love.

i usually hate books about infidelity, but i thought this one was well done. lila seems pretty awful at the beginning, but as the book goes on, we learn things about her that make her character multi-dimensional. each character is p
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