Release date: August 14, 2018
Publisher: Spark Press
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Twenty-five years ago, a group of ninth graders produced a Saturday Night Live-style videotape to cheer up their ailing friend. The show’s running time was only ninety minutes, but it had a lasting impact: Becca laughed her way through recovery, and the group—Jordana, Seth, Holly, and Lex—became her supporting cast for life.
On the silver anniversary of Becca Night Live, the friends reunite over the Fourth of July to celebrate Becca’s good health—but nothing goes as planned. The happy holiday card facades everyone’s been hiding behind quickly crumble and give way to an unforgettable three days filled with complex moral dilemmas and life-altering choices. Through humor, drama, and the alternating perspectives of five characters, The Cast explores the power of forgiveness, the importance of authenticity, and the immeasurable value of deep, enduring friendships to buoy us when life plays out differently than expected.
The Cast has one of my favorite structures in a book, it’s told from several various perspectives and gives the reader the opportunity to see the dynamics of a group of lifelong friends through all of their eyes. I love the insight this provided into their thoughts, feelings and emotional processes and felt pretty bonded to these five people by the end of the book.
I think anytime an author writes an ensemble story it must be tricky to maintain different voices for each character and Blumenfeld does an admirable job. This is also the authors debut making it all the more impressive and besides maintaining individual personalities and voices for each character, she also manages to write really smoothly about some heavy topics.
This is definitely a pretty emotional read about the highs and lows of life and the friendships that help people keep it together when things are really tough. The relationships between Becca, Jordana, Holly, Lex and Seth are both complicated and sweet and entirely relatable on so many levels. There was also some humor and lightness so it’s definitely not all heavy, but it’s one that makes you think and be grateful for the people in your own life who are there no matter what may be happening.
The Cast in three words: Meaningful, Honest and Tender.
Overall rating: 4/5
Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.