Book Review #11: The Interestings

Since the beginning of what I can only assume is time, teenagers have long wanted to be part of the “cool” crowd.  See the following example:

The Plastics

What do you suppose teenagers in the middle ages did?  Well, there probably weren’t teenagers then…they were just adults!  Maybe some manual labor would make teenagers less terrible….

Anywho, back to June’s book.  The plot of “The Interestings” by Meg Wolitzer focuses on friendships formed during those awkward teenage years that last for the rest of the characters’ lives.

The Interestings do not meet in high school, but rather at a summer camp for students aspiring to become artists.  The story is mainly told through the perspective of Jules, an “average” student from Staten Island, who meets her fellow Interestings at said summer camp in 1974.  Jules can never understand why her new wealthy, articulate and talented friends would want to hang out with her.  There’s Jonah–the damaged but gifted musician, Ethan–the awkward but poised for greatness cartoonist, Ash–an aspiring actress, and Goodman–the aloof, sexy brother of Ash. The story follows the lives of these friends through the rest of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first in New York City.  While they orbit in and out of each others’ lives, they are always held together by the memories of that one summer where they all met and became friends.

Our conversation quickly devolved from discussing the book to discussing our own shared memories and past.  While it may not have been a summer camp, college was our bonding experience.  With our varied backgrounds and own experiences, what did we think about this book?  Was it engrossing, fascinating, and riveting?  Or was it repelling and unexciting? Read on to find out…

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