A novel about mothers and daughters, about taking chances, about exploding secrets and testing the boundaries of family
Years ago, during a certain summer in Maine, two young women, unaware of each other, met a charismatic man at a craft fair and each had a brief affair with him. For Jane it was a chance to bury her recent pain in raw passion and redirect her life. For Susie it was a fling that gave her troubled marriage a way forward.
Now, sixteen years later, the family lives these women have made are suddenly upended when their teenage girls meet as strangers on social media. They concoct a plan to spend the summer in Maine with the man who is their biological father. Their determination puts them on a collision course with their mothers, who must finally meet and acknowledge their shared past and join forces as they risk losing their only daughters to a man they barely know.
This was my first experience reading Brianna Wolfson’s writing and I enjoyed her style overall. It was descriptive and flowed well, while also being filled with heart. I found myself feeling for many of the characters and their individual situations, even if they weren’t something I could identify with myself, it was written that well.
I felt this was really a story about families and all the different relationships and roles that different members play and how those roles can change with life events, time and changes to the family. I really enjoyed the look at how family dynamics can shift and the different emotions that can happen with those shifts. I didn’t necessarily like all of the characters, but each of their specific situations were well examined and explained.
Brianna Wolfson is a New York native living in San Francisco. Her narrative nonfiction has been featured on Medium, Upworthy and The Moth. She buys a lottery ticket every Friday.