Cassandra at the Wedding
April 10, 2022 2:41 AM - Subscribe

Cassandra Edwards is a graduate student at Berkeley: gay, brilliant, nerve-racked, miserable. At the beginning of this novel, she drives back to her family ranch in the foothills of the Sierras to attend the wedding of her identical twin, Judith, to a nice young doctor from Connecticut. Cassandra, however, is hell-bent on sabotaging the wedding.

On the strength of this amusing article, Why Is Everyone Suddenly Reading Cassandra at the Wedding? A forensic investigation., I read the book this weekend. It totally lives up to the hype.
posted by chavenet (7 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
That is so interesting, following the trail of recommendations. Sounds like a good book. But would it just sit among the other books I intend to read. Hmm.
posted by Glinn at 8:36 AM on April 10


I'm very fond of this book. Dazzling writing (and it doesn't hurt that it has a much-better-than-usual-for-1962 attitude towards lesbianism). I always thought of it as a lesser-known classic that deserved a significantly larger audience than it had, so... yay that now it apparently does?

There are a few aspects of it that haven't aged well, which do tarnish the book somewhat. But otherwise, it's sharp, insightful, and -- at least for anyone who comes from a family with intellectual pretensions -- frequently uncomfortable.
posted by kyrademon at 8:45 AM on April 10 [1 favorite]


It's a great book and a fast read, if limited reading time is a problem. I bought it years ago as a 2-for-1 with The Dud Avocado, but didn't get around to reading it until the Backlisted episode came out.
posted by betweenthebars at 8:49 AM on April 10 [1 favorite]


There are a few aspects of it that haven't aged well, which do tarnish the book somewhat.

I would love to hear what people think about this. I felt all the way through that eventually I would stumble on something that made me think this ("this hasn't aged well") and it never really happened (for me). I mean, it's from 1962, but even still feels very progressive (and digressive!) and I would dearly love to know what someone other than me found that made them think that.
posted by chavenet at 12:07 PM on April 10




I read this book a few years ago and enjoyed it so much I made all my coworkers buy it (we're in California and the period and landscapes and travel and family relationships were all fairly resonant to our work stuff). I like that the NYRB cover used a David Park painting - they are good at cover designs that suggest a relationship between the art and the book contents.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 11:07 AM on April 11 [1 favorite]


Just finished reading this because of the same NY Magazine article (it took a while for my library hold to come in - maybe everyone really is reading it…)

I really loved the way that the writing just fizzed - it felt like the best things I’ve read from the fifties and sixties, where the voice is chatty and irreverent (putting it with The Dud Avocado is a good fit, though I didn’t like that book at all). But at the same time it’s very modern the whole way through - it never felt like reading a period piece. And I loved the dialogue.
posted by Mchelly at 4:18 PM on May 9


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