The Lola Quartet by Emily St. John Mandel
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Four friends form a jazz band in High School, the eponymous Lola Quartet....add one more (the drummer's step sister/trumpet player's girlfriend) and you have the cast of characters playing in this story
You also have a pregnancy-kept-secret, a runaway, a theft of mucho $$$$ from a meth dealer, a ruined journalist, and a cold-blooded murder. Oh my!
Gavin and Anne were High School sweethearts, until Anne became pregnant, and decided to run away with Daniel (because he had a place to run to in Utah)....Anne spends a lot of time in turmoil, wondering if the baby will look half-Japanese, like Gavin, or Cocoa brown, like Daniel...Anna slept around a bit. Once the baby is born all pink and shiny, Daniel splits...and Anna steals over $100,000 from her crazy Meth dealer landlord....so begins her Life on the Lam....Meanwhile, 10 years on, Gavin's successful career as a journalist tanks miserably once he's caught faking stories...he has to return home to Florida to work for his sister, foreclosing properties....Jack the erstwhile Boy Genius is a Vicodin addict who spends his days reading books about jazz arcana...Daniel is an embittered police detective with a trashed marriage, two kids, and no life...Sasha the drummer spends her days hiding from reality..her nights working at a roadside diner..her spare moments devising a plan to save Anna from that hellhound Meth dealer..
The death of High School dreams...the harsh bite of reality...the way people we once thought we knew, can change into monsters...the way we accept all of this as "just life" but still keep an eye peeled over one shoulder...that's what this book is about. It's no "mystery" any more than life itself
While not earth shattering, I thought this was a good story, well told...it made me consider some of my youthful indiscretions...and what the fallout would have been, if i'd stayed in touch with people from college...and if anything would have survived from those friendships, besides regret
***This was a Net Galley***