Book Review: Someone Else’s Wedding by Tamar Cohen

Someone Else's Wedding by Tamar CohenSomeone Else’s Wedding: What it is about

From the publishers: “Mr & Mrs Max Irving request the company of:
Mrs Fran Friedman, mourning her empty nest, her lost baby, the galloping years, and a disastrous haircut. Mr Saul Friedman, runner of marathons, avoider of conflicts and increasingly distant husband. The two Misses Friedman, Pip and Katy, one pining over the man she can’t have, the other trying to shake off the man she no longer wants. At the marriage of their son James Irving, forbidden object of inappropriate and troubling desire. For thirty-six hours of secrets and lies, painted-on-smiles and potential ruin. And drinks, plenty of drinks.

There’s nothing like a wedding for stirring up the past. As Fran negotiates her way from Saturday morning to Sunday evening she is forced to confront things she’s long thought buried, sending shockwaves through her family, and to make decisions about the future that will have far-reaching consequences for them all.”

Someone Else’s Wedding: What I thought

This is a good women’s contemporary story with some unexpected serious undercurrents. Fran, the main character, tells the story in first person. She has a husband that she’s not close to any more, and a daughter with a married lover and another daughter who can’t stand her boyfriend any longer (he’s at the wedding, too).

Hour-by-hour, from Saturday morning until Sunday evening, Fran tell us what happens. No, she doesn’t get (much) sleep. She’s obsessed with Jamie, the groom, and he with her. His family, who have noticed this, are trying to keep them apart.

Much of the story of Fran is also the story of her daughters. When they all come to realise this, it becomes much easier for all of them to understand each other and to accept the decisions they make.

I have been to a few English weddings, and this seemed all very familiar. There is the wedding ceremony, the shoes that aren’t suitable for a full day’s wear, the person everyone wants to avoid, the heavy intake of alcohol. This book brought me back to the weddings that I’ve attended (including my own).

The “suspense” of Fran’s past wore a little thin at times, and I did guess some of the story in advance. But that didn’t matter much. This was a fun, mostly believable read, that will be recognisable for many people.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Number of pages: 288

First published: 2013 (June)

I got this: from Doubleday publishers for review

Genre: contemporary fiction

Extra: Also check my review for The War of the Wives

About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

12 Responses to Book Review: Someone Else’s Wedding by Tamar Cohen

  1. Isi says:

    I hate weddings! 😀
    But the book sounds good, with all those unhappy women in a wedding.

  2. Wendy says:

    I don’t really like the thought of weddings, so I don’t think I will be reading this one. The summary reminds me of “het diner” by Herman Koch, though. Have you read that one? Can you see the resemblance?

    • Leeswammes says:

      Wendy, yes, I read (and loved) The Dinner. I don’t see much of a resemblance – I guess there are some but really I would say these are very different books.

  3. Mystica says:

    I like weddings but this sounds a very complicated one.

  4. Laurie C says:

    This sounds like a book I would like! I’ve seen the cover around here and there, but it made me think it was some kind of thriller, I guess.

  5. Care says:

    This looks good to me. Am I correct in assuming it takes place entirely within 24 hours? I love books like that.

  6. Charlie says:

    It’s a bit different to what I first thought, but the short time period really appeals. I know it’s a different subject, but the shortness of The Uninvited Guests was something I loved. There just seems so much story in books with a limited time. Sounds quite a wedding!

  7. bibliosue says:

    It sounds like a nice book for the summer.

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