Sunday, July 3, 2016

In Twenty Years (Allison Winn Scotch)

Having reached my fortieth birthday just a few months ago, Allison Winn Scotch's In Twenty Years really resonated with me.  The title refers to how much can happen in the span of twenty years, a time during which six Penn college students have gone their separate ways after being the best of friends.  Even though one of them is a world-famous singer and the other is the CEO of their own company, how much have they really lived in those two decades?

It was the death of one of the six, Bea, that broke up the group for good.  Now, on the eve of what would have been Bea's fortieth birthday, the remaining five receive a letter from her attorney inviting them back for a weekend to their old house.  Catherine and Owen are married but unhappy, and Lindy seems to have it all with fame and fortune but feels empty inside.  Annie tries to put on a perfect facade on social media to cover up her insecurity, while Colin is a famous plastic surgeon who has a secret he shared with Bea.  The five converge on the house at Bea's request, but will they ever be the same when the weekend is over?

The message of In Twenty Years is clear -- don't waste your life because you only get one.  However, I never could quite get into the novel until the end.  With the exception of Bea, I felt that most of the characters were unlikable and frankly, unrealistic.  This prevented me from becoming invested in any of them, so I would put this novel on the average read scale.