Luca is fine attending the wedding of another college pal. Sure, she’s had to get used to being the only one in their clique not married, engaged, or otherwise romantically occupied, but really, that’s okay. However, when she sees Tom, a former almost-boyfriend, she’s forced to examine where she’s at in terms of life and love.
Author Portia MacIntosh has done it again.
MacIntosh knows how to pack a book full of heart, and the core of this one is Luca. Feeling lost at 31, wanting to change careers, with no love life, Luca manages to have a clear understanding of who she is but not necessarily what she wants. Deftly, MacIntosh drops her into a wedding where she’s forced into seeing college friends. It allows for a deep level of introspection that runs throughout the book as it dips between the present and a series of events that took place during 2008-09 while they were in school. This rich sense of her history makes it easy to root for her to grab her happy ending.
That doesn’t mean happiness comes easy. After arriving at the wedding venue, Luca meets Pete and develops an instant connection. However, Tom, the former almost-boyfriend, drops in and soon she’s caught in a whirlwind, bouncing between the two as the wedding and reception progresses. And that’s before her actual former boyfriend jumps back into the picture. A lesser author might have balked at the bucking and weaving Luca’s romantic story manages, but MacIntosh tackled it head-on, and the result is both complex and satisfying.
But all of this is not to suggest this book is without fun. Far from it. It is a wedding, after all, and there’s plenty of food mishaps, bridesmaid crises, and ribbing between old friends. Even in the most serious of scenes, MacIntosh manages to find the humor and the humanity. As secrets fly and friends begin questioning their relationships with each other, tensions flare. And yet what follows is one of the funniest and most surprising scenes possible. MacIntosh can throw out a one-liner with the best of them, but she’s an expert at making chaos comic.
Caught between romance and friends, new and old, Luca fights for what she wants: happiness. In the end, a happy ending ultimately drives this heartwarming story.
Title: The Time of Our Lives
Author: Portia MacIntosh
Publisher: HQ Digital
Publication Date: April 12, 2019
Note: I received a free ARC of this book through NetGalley.