A Wedding in December: A Novel
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At an inn in the Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts, seven former schoolmates gather for a wedding. Nora, the owner of the inn, has recently had to reinvent her life following the death of her husband. Avery, who still hears echoes from a horrific event at Kidd Academy 26 years ago, has made a life for himself in Toronto with his wife and two sons. Agnes, now a history teacher at Kidd is a still-single woman who longs to tell a secret she cannot reveal to the others, a secret that would stun them all. Bridget, the mother of a 15-year-old boy, has agreed to marry Bill, an old high school lover whom she has recently re-met, despite uncertainties about her health and future. Indeed, it is Bill who passionately wants this wedding and who has brought everyone together for an astonishing weekend of revelation and recrimination, forgiveness and redemption. This is Anita Shreve's most ambitious and moving novel to date, probing into human motivation with grace and skill.
He pictured the rapidly advancing figure of Mrs. Fraser even before he saw her. He was surprised by how much he minded the abrupt interruption. He had not even begun to have a proper conversation with Hazel, a conversation that could not be continued now in Mrs. Fraser’s presence, a fact that admitted of a certain kind of intimacy between himself and the woman sitting across from him, however slight, a conversation that suddenly seemed urgent to Innes, not because of its content, which might,
apology. “I’m joking,” Nora said, “but I just wanted to say I’m sorry about the fly.” “Don’t be,” Harrison said, “if the result is that charmingly obscene image.” “Judy brought the plate to me for my inspection.” Nora had on pearl earrings and, unlike earlier this morning, a suggestion of makeup. Her lips looked glossy. Her eyes were darker, more defined. “Judy is very honest, then, and you should employ her forever. She was apologetic enough for both of you.” “Judy is a pretty girl with no
Did Hazel, hearing this exchange, smile? Innes thought she did. He wondered if the circlet of diamonds was a gift from a grandmother. But almost immediately, the name Edward was mentioned in close proximity to Hazel’s, the coupling causing a frown on Louise’s brow. So it was true, Innes thought. Hazel gone before a dozen sentences exchanged. Gone even before his arrival. He was aware of the absurdity of his claim, entirely out of proportion to the length of time he had spent in her presence. She
accumulating snow. An inch, two inches already. He opened the back door of the rented Taurus and took out his briefcase. In it, there was a manuscript by an English novelist that was absorbing and superbly written. Harrison already knew the work was good. He’d read the British reviews. He could have published it without giving it a glance, but tonight, with any luck, the book would be his ticket to a world away from the Berkshires. With any luck, it would be his ticket to sleep. Harrison stepped
rope, and lifted the lightweight aluminum disk up the hill. He jumped to one side as Bill careened past him, clearly out of control. Agnes, following close behind him, yelled at Harrison to get out of the way. “You got a good run,” Rob said when Harrison had reached the top of the slope. “Here, take off your coat, give it a whirl. You can use my jacket.” “Can’t,” Rob said. Harrison remembered the fingers. “You mind?” “Sometimes.” Harrison glanced down the hill. Matt and Brian had improvised