Cover Image: The Wedding People

The Wedding People

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Member Reviews

Will this become a hit when it's released next summer? I hope so. It’s one of my top reads of 2023.

I confess this was an impulse Netgalley request based on the cover. I expected a rom com—and in some ways it is—but it’s definitely more in the vein of literary fiction.

The first 20% of the book was a straight up gut punch—incredibly depressing and dark, but also so beautiful.

Just when I'd settled into the more introspective style of writing in the early chapters, there was an abrupt shift to a very dialogue-heavy story and a lighter tone. Things could have gone all wrong from there, but Alison Espach is blessed with the ability to write both insanely good dialogue and prose that is tender, incisive, and affecting. I’m eager to explore her backlist. She’s very talented.

I have a couple gripes: A few of the characters seemed like outsized caricatures. And one character makes an appearance at the end of the novel that seemed a bit rom com tropey and not actually needed to show that the heroine has moved on. But these were small issues.

This book is a comedy and a romance, but it contained within it a darkness and depth that really spoke to me. And at its core it's a wonderful character study. The heroine, Phoebe, is one I won’t soon forget. I felt for her from beginning to end—when she was at her best and at her very worst. And I found myself genuinely moved and uplifted by the choices she made as the story progressed.

I expected a forgettable, fun little romp with this one, but I think this will turn out to be one of the most memorable books I read all year.

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This book is absolutely phenomenal. I truly never wanted it to end. Phoebe is unhappy with every part of her life when she heads to the grand Cornwall Inn with a plan. Once she arrives, she quickly realizes that everyone else at the inn is there for a wedding and her objective starts to shift. I found it to be such a relatable story of connection and friendship. Phoebe shows how important and powerful it is to find your own voice. I am honestly tempted to immediately reread it to savor the perfection.

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The Wedding People was such a good life-questioning read, it was fun and enjoyable but it also had it's bittersweet moments. It was quite interesting to see how Phoebe's plans got interrupted and how she got dragged into the wedding week, all the interactions with the other guests and activities, the journey that Phoebe goes through in those couple of days, brilliant.

This was a fast read, but I gotta say the first quarter of the book was hard on me, but once the “introduction” it's out of the way the story comes to life.

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This book took me a long time to read which is usually a quick indicator that I don't love a book. On the contrary, I really enjoyed The Wedding People and really wanted to savor this story. It is filled with dark humor and a lot of interesting ideas on life and marriage- definitely not your typical fluffy wedding story, but a much deeper read.

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A quick and emjoyable read. Fairly predictable. Will be a great summer read for next year and I expect to see it on the beach this summer. Thanks for the chance to read.

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I found this to be a slow paced book but it had wonderful and snappy dialogue between the characters. For me, the dialogue saved the book. Phoebe, a professor married to another professor, lacks ambition and has difficulty with follow-through. While she struggles with fertility issues, her husband doesn't mind so much--as Phoebe finds out when he leaves her for another woman. All this is to say that Phoebe is not enjoying life, she is drinking too much, having difficulties getting to work and ready to call it quits in life. She ends up at a hotel that is full of "wedding people." Thank you to NetGalley and Henry Holt and Co. for the digital ARC. This review is my own and not coerced in any way. 4 stars.

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Phoebe rents a suite at a fancy hotel in Newport, RI where she plans to end her life. She is the only guest on the grounds who is not there for a six day wedding extravaganza. When she meets Lila the bride, they start a friendship and Phoebe not only becomes involved in the wedding festivities but finds she has many reasons to live.

After reading the author’s other novels, I got my hands on The Wedding People as soon as I could. The story takes a much different direction than The Adults and Notes on my Sister’s Sudden Disappearance and it’s a wonderful read. The writing is beautiful, the dialogue is well done and the character development is so good. I loved how the author sprinkled humor throughout the story and I was rooting for all of these flawed people. I enjoyed everything in this novel from the very first page!

Thank you to the author, Henry Holt & Company and NetGalley for an advance reader copy of this lovely book. I’ll be looking for the hardcover to add to my library after the publication date.

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The wedding people was a great book, it really kept my interest and had a really great ending. Alison Espach really does a good job with bringing not only romance into this book but also other aspects as well which makes for an interesting read.

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It took me a while to get into this book but after it stuck with me just how much I loved it. It was so honest. It isn't my normal style of book that I enjoy but there was something about the vulnerability of really telling it like it is with out sugar coating the characters. I appreciated it.

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Totally my favorite kind of book - tackling bleak subjects with humor and pathos and even a little romance. For fans of Catherine Newman and maybe even Emily Henry.

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I wanted to read this book because it had wedding in the title and takes place in Newport RI, one of my favorite places. Actually the book was not really about the wedding and while Newport is the backdrop could have taken place anywhere there are REALLY fancy hotels. It is a book about characters, love, loss and how are lives are and can they be changed. Phoebe is a great character--she starts out as a dismal character, but at the end of the book--not the end of the story (that is left to the reader), she is a true heroine, fixing everyone's problems, especially her own. I hate to say this, but this book would make a great movie. If you loved the Philadelphia story (the play or the movie) you will like this book.

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In the novel, "The Wedding People," Phoebe Stone flees her drab existence as an adjunct professor in St. Louis: "Phoebe wasn't beloved by her department. She wasn't hated but she wasn't a star---" only to arrive at the Cornwall Inn in Newport, Rhode Island inadvertently during someone's lavish, week-long wedding celebration.

She finds herself thrown into the festivities and develops friendships with the prospective bride, Lila, and groom, Gary, a widower with a teenage daughter, Juice.

"You'll be okay." Phoebe tells Juice. "I know you don't believe that now. But you will."
"How do you know though?"
"Because I didn't have a mother, either."

Alison Espach has written a touching, funny, and altogether heartwarming story.

Thanks to NetGalley and Henry Holt and Company for the ARC of "The Wedding People."

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This one was definitely a roller coaster. Tw: suicide and infertility.

I want to say thank you to Net Galley and the publisher for this arc.

I will say I almost DNF this book at 20%. I found the characters to be extremely unlikeable and the topics very dark/some cliche tropes with the characters not taking accountability for their own agency in life and the plot to be slightly unbelievable. I did manage to power through it and liked it better at the end which is why I landed on 3 stars.

There was nice character evolution and it felt like I was reading a different story the second half. There were predictable moments but also some nice messages strewn throughout.

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"Wedding People" by Alison Espach is an absolute gem! This book is a delightful blend of romance, drama, and humor, making it an irresistible page-turner from start to finish.

From the very first page, the author's writing style effortlessly draws you into the lives of the characters, making them feel like old friends. Each character is beautifully developed, with their own unique quirks and backstories that add depth and authenticity to the narrative.

What sets Wedding People apart from other books in the genre is its ability to balance multiple storylines seamlessly. The author skillfully weaves together various plot threads, creating a tapestry of emotions that keeps readers engaged and invested throughout. The pacing is perfect, with just the right amount of suspense and surprises to keep you eagerly turning the pages.

Wedding People explores deeper themes beyond the glitz and glamour of weddings. It delves into the complexities of relationships, the power of love, and the importance of following one's heart. The book beautifully captures the emotional rollercoaster that weddings can be, highlighting the joy, stress, and unexpected twists that come with planning such a momentous event.

In conclusion, "Wedding People" is an absolute must-read for anyone who enjoys heartwarming stories filled with love, laughter, and a touch of drama. Highly recommended!

Thank you NetGalley and Alison Espach for the ARC copy of Wedding People.

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Wow, this one really tugged at my heart. I loved it. Thank you netgalley & the publisher for the ARC in exchange for an honest review

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It has been a long time since I came across a book I truly could not put down and this one broke that streak. Author Alison Espach grabs your attention from the very beginning and slowly, deftly introduces you to the characters that make up "The Wedding People."

Protagonist Phoebe is set on ending her life, but an unending sequence of events puts a halt to those plans, in the most inventive way possible.

I wish I could read this for the first time again!

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I really enjoyed the book and would recommend it to anyone looking for a quick read.


Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for this ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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This book was advertised as uproariously funny and devastatingly tender. I did not know what I was in for. It is the bleakest and most hopeful book I have read this year. I thought I was getting a Beach Read™ and ended up with Literary Fiction™. It’s set at a beach resort. There’s a wedding. Neither of these statements gets close to the heart of what this book is about. However, I couldn’t tell you much more without spoilers. This one comes out in July. I definitely recommend, but don’t read it on the beach.

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Thank you NetGalley and Henry Holt and Co. for this ARC.

I thought I was going to be reading a romance, but this book went beyond my expectations. Right away I was invested into Phoebe's life. Phoebe was going through a major yet heartbreaking life change and needed an escape. In her mind that escape was to commit suicide. Thankfully, she meets the bride of the wedding and others from the wedding party when she checks into the hotel. I won't say anything else other than this is a must read for anyone who is going through a rough time in their life there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

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Thank you so much to Henry Holt & Co and NetGalley.

This was such a wonderful read.

CW: Suicide & infertility

Phoebe is going to kill herself. Her husband has left her. She has had several failed IVF cycles. Her job sucks, and it's where her husband and his new woman (her former friend) work. She flies to a place she has never been and stays at an inn. This is where Lila is having her wedding. The other guests at the inn are for her wedding. Lila cannot have a death ruin her wedding.

What follows is a story where Lila and Phoebe both learn about themselves. They both are faced with decisions that will impact them and need to figure out what they want. They'll learn about themselves, together, along the way.

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