The Weekend by Charlotte Wood- Our Review
The brilliant new novel from Charlotte Wood, acclaimed author of The Natural Way of Things.
People went on about death bringing friends together, but it wasn’t true. The graveyard, the stony dirt – that’s what it was like now. They knew each other better than their own siblings, but Sylvie’s death had opened up strange caverns of distance between them.
Four older women with a lifelong friendship of the best kind: loving, practical, frank and steadfast. But when Sylvie dies, the ground shifts dangerously for the remaining three. Can they survive together without her?
They are Jude, a once-famous restaurateur, Wendy, an acclaimed public intellectual, and Adele, a renowned actress now mostly out of work. Struggling to recall exactly why they’ve remained close all these years, the grieving women gather for Christmas at Sylvie’s old beach house – not for festivities, but to clean the place out before it is sold.
Without Sylvie to maintain the group’s delicate equilibrium, frustrations build and painful memories press in. Fraying tempers, an elderly dog, unwelcome guests and too much wine collide in a storm that brings long-buried hurts to the surface – and threatens to sweep away their friendship for good.
The Weekend explores growing old and growing up, and what happens when we’re forced to uncover the lies we tell ourselves. Sharply observed and excruciatingly funny, this is a jewel of a book, a celebration of tenderness and friendship that is nothing short of a masterpiece.
Four older women, who have been close knit friends over the decades are wracked by the death of one member of their beloved group.
Everything changes with the death of Sylvie, friendship dynamics are shaken while each grieve her loss and emotions rise as they are forced to face their own mortality. A once affectionate and faithful quartet, the remaining women have the heart-wrenching job of sorting out Sylvie’s home to prepare it for impending sale.
So over Christmas, they come together with Sylvie joining them in spirit at her home. Jude a once famous restaurateur, Wendy an acclaimed public intellectual and Adele, a once renowned actress all living together… What could possibly go wrong?
I devoured ‘The Weekend’… over a weekend! A magnificent novel, I loved the depth and breadth of writing while it being simultaneously funny and a delight to read.
Review by Lydia @ Great Escape Books