I am not a one-book-at-a-time reader. I read more than one book at a time. I do that unless one book that I’m reading grabs hold of me and suddenly nothing else interests me. That’s when I become a one-book-at-a-time reader.
Hannah Pittard’s Reunion is a one-book-at-a-time book. I was hooked from the first paragraph and it was over far too soon.
Told entirely from the in the moment first-person perspective of Kate Pulaski – a sometime screenwriter, a most of the time screenwriting professor, a full time sister, and a not always faithful wife – Reunion is Kate’s story as her life falls apart just in time for the family reunion no one wants to have… when her father commits suicide in Atlanta and his three oldest children fly from Chicago, Denver, and San Francisco to see what’s left of the man they hardly knew after he went through five wives and ten children in total.
The family, most Kate and her full siblings Nell and Elliot, are thoroughly modern but they’re trapped by relationship issues that obviously stem from their father’s laxness in that area. When Kate has to fess up to an affair, a mountain of debt, and an impending divorce, Nell and Elliot are at first bothered by what they see as a failing of the family but they open up, in time, and admit that their own lives aren’t as perfect as they seem.
That’s what makes this book so fantastic. It is real. It is family, in all it’s complicated dirtiness.
Novels about family drama, especially under the microscope of just one weekend and a funeral, can tend to try too hard to be everything at all times. Pittard did it right when she focused just on Kate and let Kate’s thoughts – never not amusing, interesting, or real – drive the story.
As I read, one thought kept occurring to me… “I am Kate.”
I am Kate and I am absolutely okay with that because Kate is awesome.
I received a copy of Reunion through NetGalley and Grand Central Publishing in exchange for an honest & original review.