Sara Vilkomerson
July 03, 2012 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Seating Arrangements

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Maggie Shipstead
publisher
Knopf
genre
Fiction

We gave it an A-

There’s nothing that raises the blood pressure more than a destination wedding. As Maggie Shipstead’s delightful debut novel proves, this is particularly true when two wonderfully dysfunctional WASPy families, a gaggle of temptress bridesmaids, and one rowdy groomsman are all ensconced on a picturesque Nantucket-like island off the New England shore for a three-day wedding-weekend extravaganza. Shipstead writes with clarity and confidence, nimbly dropping into multiple characters’ heads, giving each a distinct voice and point of view but always with great wit and heart. Seating Arrangements brims with sharp observations about love, lust, family, and the real meaning of marital bliss. A-

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