Saturday, February 16, 2013

A Dual Inheritance (Joanna Hershon)

Because I read and write for various mediums, I tend to have 5-6 books waiting for me in the "queue."  I usually need to read 2-3 at a time just to keep up, so when it was time for A Dual Inheritance, I booted up my Kindle and began.  As I started Joanna Hershon's story, I found myself not wanting to change to one of the other books I was reading.  This novel is layered beautifully, covers multiple generations, and begs to answer the question "Why do we let perceived slights keep us from holding onto relationships we were meant to have?".

Ed Cantowicz and Hugh Shipley are two schoolmates from opposite sides of the track who quickly become friends.  When Hugh's ex-girlfriend, Helen, re-enters the picture, Ed understandably is the third wheel; that feeling quickly dissipates, however, and the three become practically inseparable.  As the reader is introduced to the main characters' families, she learns that Ed and Hugh have widely different goals in life.  Hershon then moves onto Ed and Hugh's wives and children, skillfully showing that the connection between these two men will never end, whether they want it to or not.

While at times a little slow, A Dual Inheritance is at its best when it focuses on Ed and Hugh.  Even while they are apart (even living on separate continents), the reader knows that they (and their secrets) will eventually meet up again.