Image credited to Goodreads
I take you
Lily Wilder is a New York based lawyer who is planning her wedding to Will: a museum director. She loves him but finds monogamy a real challenge.
Kennedy writes from Lily’s 1st person point of view allowing the reader to get right into Lily’s head from the first page. She’s created a acerbic, funny and intelligent character who has a very complex family life. Her father has the same inability to settle down in a long term relationship with one woman, and the first three of his wives are attending Lily’s wedding. The three women have developed a close friendship, despite the fact that they met because of Lily’s dad’s philandering.
There are some distinctive and memorable characters. Ana: one of Lily’s stepmothers is a congresswoman from California with a raucous laugh and is only five foot tall. Jane: another of her stepmothers is elegant and well groomed, as well as being very cultured. Freddie: Lily’s best friend is a bisexual who has been engaged three times and has a high sex drive.
Lily’s kept a lot of her past hidden from Will and slowly it comes out through her interactions with those she left behind. She hasn’t returned to her hometown in nearly thirteen years. Kennedy dripfeeds what might have been the reason that Lily has avoided Key West for so long, slowly allowing the reader to get to know who Lily is at the present point in the story.
It is a very funny take on the genre, with a lead character who is rightly unapologetic about the fact that she likes to have sex. There are slight similarities with Bridget Jones, in that the main thrust of the story is about a thirty something and her relationships, with friends, family and romantic partners. Although for me Lily is more akin to Samantha from Sex and the city, even though Lily does ultimately find that she wants a long term future with Will.
Kennedy is a honest and witty writer, creating believable, flawed but likable characters, and subverting some of the cliches of this genre.