The Last Time They Met
by Anita Shreve
Category: Fiction / General
313 pages; ISBN: 0316781142
Rating: 9/10 (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner
When semi-recluse, but renowned poet Thomas Janes learns that his peer Linda Fallon will make an appearance at a Toronto literary conference, he decides to attend too. Both over fifty, Thomas and Linda once shared a torrid love affair when both were married to other people. That affair ended quite horribly with Thomas and Linda tragically having broken hearts.
Now together they look back over time to the moments when their lives converged. Twenty-five years have passed since they had that disastrous love affair, but neither one ever forgot the other over the subsequent decades. They vividly remember back to high school in the Northeast United States where their obsession first began. Linda and Thomas have always wondered whether they could have done something different as regrets of what they both believe should have been still haunt them.
Anita Shreve goes back in time to one of her previous novels to resurrect Thomas, husband of the narrator (Jean) of THE WEIGHT OF WATER. The story line uses a reverse chronological order to tell his side of the tale. This technique adds uniqueness though can bewilder a reader at times. The gripping story line works as the audience empathizes with Linda and Thomas yet retains sympathy for some of the support cast impacted by their love for another. Anita Shreve has written a strong relationship drama that her fans will want to reread.
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