Review by Ceri Wheeldon
A thought provoking book about female friendship as we age.
Three long term friends Jude, Wendy and Adele all in their 70s, come together for a weekend to sort out the beach house and contents of a deceased friend, Sylvie.
The friendship between the four has lasted decades and survived the different life paths each has taken, but as the three come together once more , without Sylvie the dynamic of their friendship is very different.
Each of the three women is having to find their own way to navigate the issues that come with ageing – Adele , an actress is now struggling to find work and her ‘live in the moment’ attitude to life is now creating problems in terms of security at this stage of her life. Wendy , a widow, is confronting the fact that she may never reach what she felt was her potential in her profession and the capable Jude is assessing her future as she looks at her long term relationship with a successful married man. Ageing is affecting each in different ways – and their differences are accentuated as they spend time together without the friend who was the glue in their friendship group.
As the weekend progresses events occur that force each to confront their pasts, present and futures. There are tears, frustrations, revelations which all affect how they see themselves and each other.
The Weekend is a moving exploration of accepting the challenges and benefits of ageing. It highlights how dreams do not fade, but the certainty that you can achieve them does. It explores the true nature of friendship and the acceptance of a new phase of life.
The Weekend deals with the issues of ageing with both humour and compassion.
It is a gentle book that makes you think. Definitely worth a read – and a great book club choice!