Please note that I received this book via NetGalley. This did not affect my rating or review.
So the only reason I am giving this two stars is that it is not as bad as Carnegie Hill. I knew this author sounded familiar to me, and I am annoyed I wasted a pick on this. The entire book was a slow moving train wreck that I was unable to look away from. The main character, Iris, is terrible. The other characters we get are awful. The writing was meh, and the flow was a mess too. The ending was 100 percent not realistic, and I just sighed. It didn’t help that I have read so many books featuring this exact same plotline the past few months (bridesmaid gets fed up, blogs about it or in this case creates a Facebook group) which this was done better than this.
“The Bridesmaid Union” follows Iris Sullivan. Iris has just saved the day at one of her closet’s friend’s wedding in Florida. She gets upset though when the bride doesn’t acknowledge it. When her younger sister Jasmine gets engaged to a millionaire tech guy, she decides she has had it and creates a private Facebook group called The Bridesmaid Union. On the Facebook page Iris can let the other members know about the annoying things her sister wants her to do and the other members can share their own stories. Things get messy though when the group starts growing, and Iris’s members start talking more and more about things non-bridesmaid related.
So Iris is just…exhausting. Yep, that’s the word. Her constant need of validation, but anger that she wants it was so….ugh. Honestly, even I got tired of hearing her going off at her family for voting for Donald Trump (or not voting at all). And I am saying that because the book seemed to be treating this as just as cute character flaw even though her parents were bigoted Christians. There’s a scene where they start to pressure Jasmine’ fiancée (who is Jewish) to convert. None of this read as amusing to me, I just read it as these people are all terrible and Iris needed to just stop talking/reacting to them.
The other characters are not great. Jasmine was superficial and just supposed to be a caricature of an influencer. David was a non-entity. The supposed love that Iris started to feel for the guy came out of nowhere and was not realistic at all. Iris’s parents were not great. Rose was very good and I honestly wanted to read more about her and her life in Florida. God love her, I wouldn’t have visited home either. The women and some men from the Facebook private group got a little bit of development, but of course way too much attention was paid to the character of Kyle.
The writing was better than the last book of his I read. I can say that the flow was better too. But that’s not saying much. If this was any other book and I had not read the author before, I would have given this 1 star. I was just bored by this whole story-line. No one was holding a gun to Iris’s head to participate in her sister’s wedding. The only character I liked (Rose) was the one who finally pointed out how childish Iris was being about so many things. The evolving plotline with Kyle didn’t make sense and Iris’s need to even stay in contact with him just showed she has the worst judgement ever. As I said above, I have read at least 5 to 6 books over the past year where we have a put upon bridesmaid dealing with a crazy bride. This one didn’t have anything new to tell in that realm.
The setting of this book is 2018, and we are 2 years into the Trump administration. There’s a lot of discussion of being cancelled and all of that and I just put my head back and sighed like a thousand times. I will say one thing, Vatner does showcase how most family members dealt with their Trump relatives (by just still interacting with them and acting like what they said wasn’t terrible) very well.
The ending was a joke.