The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer
I finished The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer a few weeks ago but I keep thinking about it. The book is a novel for my generation.
The book focuses on a group of people who meet at camp as teenagers in the 70s. A camp with a bend towards the arts that has kids from all walks of life. There are a few kids that are on financial aid at this camp and some of them are part of the group that calls themselves "The Interestings".
We follow this group of friends from camp in to their mid-50's. Each of their lives go through what all of our lives go through, a series of ups and downs. You get to know each individual character in depth. We read about the first bout of AIDS, the conversations that take place about feminism that will be different from the past generation, the gay friends who come out of the closet, having kids that grow up and go to college, autism, how some friends have incredible success and others do not, being abused as a child, sexual attraction and even different work habits. The book combines all the things that I have witnessed over my life.
What has stayed with me is that how each of their lives took a different path based on who they are, the baggage they carry, their expectations and perceptions of each other and each of their relationships with themselves and each other. Who you become based on all the luggage you carry or who you do not become is really interesting when you take a step back and look at it from a birds eye view.
I highly recommend this book. An American novel.