People seem to think it matters how a couple meets, but I have always been much more interested in how one parts. In general, I think endings tend to be more informative than beginnings. And yet, people love those meeting stories, even though they are all the same. It's always "a friend introduced us" or "I was in love with him from the moment I saw him" or "we were just friends."
I think that's why people love these stories actually. People love to hear them, because the stories are all the same-the stories remind us of ourselves.
Maybe ending stories are all the same, too. "I fell in love with someone else" or "I woke up one morning and I didn't love him anymore" or "She died" or "He died" or any combination therein.
--From Margarettown: a Novel, by Gabrielle Zevin
I read the first Gabrielle Zevin that most do: Elsewhere. It won some awards and can be found in just about any bookstore. From that point on, I was hooked. I followed it up with Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac, her other young adult novel.
I finally dug a little deeper and came upon her adult stuff: Margarettown and The Hole We're In. I just finished Margettown, her first published novel. Vastly different from her YA stuff, a bit more raw and just as engrossing.
She is rapidly becoming one of my favorite authors of all time. Margarettown is a love story. The story begins with the narrator, "N." writing to his daughter, Jane, to tell her about her parents met and fell in love - how"N." falls in love with Margaret Towne, really.
It sounds so ordinary when I sum it up that way; I don't know how else to succinctly sum it up without giving away too much. But it is so much more than a simple love story. It certainly doesn't really read like a romance (except for maybe about the first five pages). The book is harsh in its portrayal of how love can be, how hard it is to really know a person. Everything about the book is engaging, from the beautifully drawn characters and the variety of narrators to Zevin's gut wrenchingly honest observations on how fickle, yet true, love can be.
A Softer World: 1248
2 years ago