Member Reviews

This book has a unique premise. I found the beginning a bit depressing and the front half a bit slow but it picked up in the back half and I enjoyed it. I liked the characters and the witty banter. It’s a great portrayal of Rhode Island (spoken as a native). It’s a fun story with thought provoking themes.

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The title, cover, and description absolutely drew me to this book! Once I started, I was little weary because Phoebe was in a very dark place, but her humor and hatred towards the wedding people kept me going and then I could not put it down! From Phoebe and Lila honest and open discussions, the flirtatious hottub escapade, and Phoebe rediscovering herself, this is a book I'm still thinking about weeks later. 4.5 stars - the dark beginning was a bit of a challenging read for me.

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Wow. This is such a beautiful novel. I truly did not know what to expect with The Wedding People, but the book completely enthralled me from the start. I found myself fully committed to each character's development and wanted each of them to find happiness and understanding. Every aspect of this story is so fully developed and unfolds so perfectly, I was blown away by how great it was.

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This was truly delightful and I loved every minute of it. I was drawn to this right away by the beautiful cover! The Wedding People is raw and emotional and funny. It follows two women from completely different walks of life and their unlikely friendship that grows over the span of a week. The women are complete opposites to one another, yet complement each other perfectly.

I don’t always love character- driven books but I think the characters are written really well; they feel very realistic and human. Phoebe is very raw and you get a really good sense of how she feels and thinks. Lila is somewhat unlikable as a character, but also perfect for the story. You do find yourself rooting for her. Both of these main characters grow a lot throughout the story. The overall story is quite predictable, but there were a few things that left me surprised! I love the friendship, the healing, the self discovery. There’s even the right amount of romance. I absolutely vibed with the author’s writing style. Heavy topics are expressed, but the overall tone is quite light-hearted. I found myself laughing at the banter between characters. I was left feeling extremely satisfied.

I would definitely recommend this one! Thank you to Netgalley and Henry Holt & Co for sending me this book for review consideration. All opinions are my own.

Content warnings: suicidal thoughts, suicide attempt, depression, grief, cancer, infidelity, divorce, infertility, miscarriage

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Phoebe Stone is the only one at a posh Newport Rhode Island hotel that is not part of a private 6 day wedding celebration . Before long, however, the bride begins to confide in Phoebe, and the wedding drama and the people involved become the unusual cure for her depression and withdrawal from life.

It took me a while to get invested in this story, as Phoebe's Back story did not grab me and it took me a while to get into the sardonic humor in the book. Once in though, I was touched by the authors ability to use humor and her often ridiculous but somehow touching characters to teach us about accepting ourselves as we change, how to embrace happiness when it comes, as well as dealing with depression, and the importance of being honest with ourselves and others. As these well drawn and quirky characters change Phoebes life in a few short days, they may keep you thinking about their lessons as well.

Thank you to The publisher and Net galley for this digital arc in exchange for an honest review.

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This book was a slow burn for me. I honestly thought it would be a little more uplifting, with the book cover. If you don’t like talking about suicide or infertility is a trigger for you, this is not the book for you. As a therapist I felt the author did a good job depicting depression and suicidal ideation and I enjoyed the darker humor around it.

Phoebe’s honesty made me chuckle more than once in the book. Especially as her friendship with Lila unfolded.

Thank you NetGalley & Henry Holt for this ARC!

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The most perfectly imperfect characters, and the perfectly imperfect situation- makes "The Wedding People", by Alison Espach an enjoyable ride from beginning to end. It's the perfect Rom Com with some extra feels. This book would make a great movie. I just wished the story wouldn't end.

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4.5 stars ⭐️
This novel brings humor to sadness in the best way. There were poignant insights throughout that really made you think. You root for every character to find happiness, even Lila, whose selfishness was hard to digest in the start, but was able to help bring Phoebe back from her deepest point. Highly highly recommend!

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This deeply moving novel shines a light on mental health and our ability to consciously choose the life we want.

Despite this novel’s heavy themes, the character development is excellent. Our MC Pheobe starts off in a very dark place after miscarriage, divorce, and other tragedies. Her world begins to expand when she stays at the Cornwall Inn and gets roped into joining a wedding party. Set in historic Newport, Rhode Island, The Wedding People is a beautiful story of being who you truly are after heartbreak. Pheobe and others rebuild their worlds through self discovery, honesty, and authenticity.

All of the wedding guests are three dimensional. Espach has a gift for writing dialogue! I laughed out loud at points, and came close to tears at others. Lila is both so frustrating are so lovable! It’s incredible how connected I felt to the characters by the end. This is an enjoyable, heartfelt read that sticks with you. I 100% recommend!

Huge thanks to NetGalley and Henry Holt & Co for this advanced copy.

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Unfortunately this book wasn’t for me. The cover is gorgeous tho.

Thank you Netgalley for the arc.

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Lila has planned every detail of her perfect wedding weekend at the beautiful Cornwall Inn in Newport RI except for one: the arrival of Phoebe, the only non wedding guest staying at the inn. Phoebe has always dreamed of the perfect vacation at the inn with her husband but he has left her and she arrives in her best dress and shiny gold heels, planning one last night of luxury before committing suicide. When the women meet in the elevator, Lila is horrified to discover Phoebe's plan which will ruin her perfect wedding.

As back stories are revealed, absurd humor alternates with sadness and both women find the strength to forge new, independent plans for their lives. This is the perfect beach read.

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Alison Espach is funny, and she creates vivid characters who feel like your friends. This novel was great - it's a bit devastating but then brings you back in for all of the heart. This novel is all about finding your community, find people who you can spill all of your guts to and then they'll do it right back.

Phoebe jumped off the page - she's gone to this fancy hotel in order to commit suicide after her husband had an affair and seemingly started a new family without her. Turns out, she's the only hotel guest not part of this huge wedding party. Phoebe runs into the bride and because she's not part of the bride's inner circle, the two become very close and the bride uses Phoebe to unload all of her own insecurities and drama. As Phoebe starts to feel more and more needed, she comes to terms with what her life is now and even though it's nothing like she imagined, she can still find joy and happiness in this new stage of her life.

I won't forget the way this book made me feel - it's bordering on the light and fluffy side of contemporary fiction though it does have some very serious and gut-wrenching topics. But it's generally very hopeful and affirming, and it seems to be focused on finding your people and starting fresh if need be.

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Phoebe Stone has dreamt of visiting the Cornwall, a beautiful hotel in Newport, with her husband for years, so when he leaves her for her best friend and her life falls apart, she decides to get the nicest room there for one last splurge for herself. However, when she arrives, the rest of the hotel is filled with a wedding party and a bride, Lila, who has planned the wedding to the last detail, well for everything except the suicidal guest who could ruin her wedding. Lila and Phoebe quickly become confidants and Phoebe becomes part of the wedding party and once immersed in the wedding and the guests, she finds a new path for her life that she never imagined when she checked into the Cornwall.

I could not put this book down or stop talking about it. While a slightly dark and quirky premise, it was such a nice surprise to enjoy this one as much as I did. The characters were driving this novel and it had so much humor throughout that I was disappointed when the wedding party ended and I had to shut the book. This is my first by the author but I will definitely be going to the backlist! I can’t wait until this one comes out and I can tell all my friends to read it.

4.5 stars

Thank you to NetGalley and Henry Holt for the ARC

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Thank you to Henry Holt and NetGalley for the opportunity to read an e-arc of The Wedding People by Alison Espach.
I did not know much about this novel before requesting it as a read now. But I am sure happy that I took the leap. This will surely be one of my favorite books this year.

Dealing quite bluntly with themes such as infertility, infidelity and suicide, it may not appeal on its face to the average reader seeing “Wedding” in the title and expecting a rom-com. But I would argue that these are just a small part of this rather complex, wonderful story filled with chance meetings, friendship and overwhelming hope.

Phoebe Snow is a relatable, sympathetic character who grabbed me from page one. I was rooting for her through the entire book. The juxtaposition of the after affects of her failed marriage to the wedding at the center of the action is quite something. Ditto the relationship building between Phoebe, and the young bride, Lila. Initially Lila’s self-centeredness got under my skin, but I’ll admit that Espach’s ability to tease out a character was crucial to the believability of the friendship growth between these two. The eccentric cast of family and friends rounds out the story in such a refreshing way, that I found the book hard to put down in a way most serious novels do not. There are many laugh out loud moments amidst the serious ones, and a satisfying conclusion for all involved. No, it is not the fairy tale ending one might expect of a story with a wedding at the heart, but a more realistic outcome for Phoebe and crew. I wholeheartedly hope that readers will see past the initial low moments and r.s.v.p. yes to this wise and beautifully written novel. 5/5 star read

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Oh this book is laugh out loud hilarious but also so tender and inspiring. We meet Phoebe at a low point in her life but she decides to take control and change things. What starts as a wedding Crasher in an innocent way ends in new friends and hilarious antics.

This is a must read!! It’s so refreshing to have a story that is so real in the way life can hand you lemons and you get to decide what to do.

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I loved this book! I thought the relationship between Lyla and Phoebe was well done and so interesting. The ending was great and really satisfying too.

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At times, humor can be hard to write and to do well--this book does it so well. It is funny, but it is also lovely and wonderful. It can be a real feat to laugh and feel for the characters. I really enjoyed this.

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Many thanks to @henryholtbooks, @macmillanusa, and @netgalley for my #gifted (free) copy. Pub date 7/30/24.

This novel is about a woman who is ready to give up. When I first started reading, I thought this was going to be so depressing, but it was actually very heartfelt and quirky with a good message. I think fans of ANXIOUS PEOPLE by Fredrik Backman are going to love this one.

Phoebe's life is not going so great, so she books a suite at a luxurious inn. Phoebe quickly realizes when she gets to the inn that she is the only person there who is not a guest of the wedding. The bride spots Phoebe and wants to know why she is there because she booked the whole inn for her wedding. Phoebe tells her she is there to end her life, but the bride will not have her ruining her wedding.

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The Wedding People has many life lessons that are important. I found the book to be predictable, but I still enjoyed the story and following Phoebe’s journey. Thank you to NetGalley and Henry Holt & Co for the ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review. The book publishes on July 30, 2024.

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I literally laughed out loud for so much of this book. it was so much fun! The Wedding People is Alison Espach's latest novel and it will bring you so much happiness. Phoebe sets out to a fancy hotel in her best dress ready to kill herself. Instead she meets the bride in an elevator and finds herself one of the "wedding people" who have rented the hotel for the entire week. Come along as she remembers why she wants to live and makes some new friends on the way. You won't be disappointed.

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