Sunday, December 07, 2008


Author: Joshua Henkin
Genre: Fiction
Published: 2007
Personal Rating: 3.5/5
Yearly Count: 157

Julian Wainwright and Mia Mendelsohn, both freshman at Graymont College, meet in a laundry room. Their relationship evolves over time and eventually they decide to live life together. Matrimony not only explores their lives, but those of their family and friends over a span of approximately 15 years.

I was excited to finally get my hands on this book. The topic of matrimony, college, and relationships in general, was of interest to me. Having a large portion of the book set in Ann Arbor, Michigan was a bonus!

Looking back into Julian and Mia's lives before they met, and taking leaps forward in time after they married, were blended in well. I enjoyed getting to know how, and/or why, they were the people they had become. Even so, I never connected to them. It felt like I was looking through a bubble into their lives - just watching them, with no emotional response. I was interested, just not connected.
Overall, I enjoyed the writing style and the general flow of the story line; however, I needed more oomph somewhere. If character-driven, quiet stories about college students growing up is something you would enjoy - this one is for you.


One thing I found of great interest (that I've only experienced a few times in my reading) was that I felt like the book was more auto-biographical than fiction. I have absolutely no grounds to support that theory, but I experienced that feeling several times throughout the book.

You can find out if it's auto-biographical here!


  1. Anonymous7:15 PM

    I wondered if it was somewhat autobiographical when I read it too!

  2. Overall, I enjoyed the writing style and the general flow of the story line; however, I needed more oomph somewhere.

    Yes someone else who feels what I felt while reading this one...I never got out of start with the characters..I really wanted to like them but they were a little to miltoast (sp?)for me. But, I did enjoy the Henkin's writing style and the overall flow of the book and I would give him a second chance.

  3. Yup, I felt like it was auto-biographical as well. I think especially knowing that Josh teaches writing in college and had probably gone through similar writer-student related things himself? Overall I felt the same way you did...

  4. I've talked to Josh and it's semi-autobiographical. It's not a true story, but it's obvious that he's lived in Ann Arbor if you've lived there and I'm sure the same is true about the other locations.

    Actually, it was the lack of oomph that I enjoyed. I guess I was just in the mood for a quiet book. I can't say I loved the characters, but I enjoyed following their lives and everything felt very real and truthful to me.

  5. Bermudaonion ~ It just has that feel, doesn't it?

    Yasmin ~ Yeah, I wanted to like them more, too.

    Trish ~ I didn't know he taught at a college until I read someone's review on goodreads. It makes sense that it would be auto-biographical - write what you know. Isn't that what they say?

    Bookfool ~ HA! Our suspicions are true! :) I know, I know, SEMI-autobiographical. I LOVED reading about Ann Arbor - loved it! I also enjoyed following their lives, I just wish I cared more about them. They seemed far away to me.

  6. Hey everybody! You can find out if it's auto-biographical here!


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Happy Reading!