Susy's Reviews > Seating Arrangements

Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead
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Aug 25, 2012

really liked it
Read in August, 2012

Another book on many summer reading lists and as memory serves, it was variously billed as social satire, chick lit and a wedding story. It's hardly chick lit but there's satire in bunches as the wedding weekend of a decidedly upscale Boston family is played out in a lovely New England setting. The father of the bride is the antithesis of Steve Martin's father of the bride; he's all stiff upper lip, keep up appearances to remind one and all of his affluent life, Harvard degree which hide his complete lack of self confidence. He's determined to do all that he can to make his daughter's wedding the perfect event his wife has planned but all the while conniving to gain membership into a private club that clearly doesn't want him - not to mention his pathetic attemptes to endear himself to one of the bridesmaids. At times, the story is more the father's; Winn Van Meter spends much of the pre wedding events pondering his life; it was difficult to read his reflections on a life that hasn't brought contentment.

Still, a wedding set on a posh island off the Maine coast can't be all bad and it isn't. Interesting cross sections of humanity combined with a very pregnant bride and her wedding party make for a great character study and good reading.
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