The Wedding Writer – Book Review & Giveaway

Jeff had called her hungry. And she is, for many things – for a place in the world, a home. And for happiness. – from The Wedding Writer, page 130 –

Lucky Quinn has worked hard to move up the ranks of the bridal business. She considers herself very lucky when she manages to snag the coveted position as wedding writer for Your Wedding magazine. Under the tutelage of Grace Ralston, editor-in-chief, Lucky quietly positions herself for a coup.

Grace Ralston is the queen of the bridal business. Now in her mid-50s she lives and breathes her work and mourns the strained relationship between she and her lesbian daughter, Isla. The last thing she expects is to be ousted from her editor-in-chief position by a young woman she has come to adore. With only her two cats for company, and her hair falling out from stress, Grace begins to wonder if it is too late to find love.

Sara is also edging into middle-life and loves her job as fashion director at Your Wedding. She has immersed herself so deeply in work that her personal life is nearly non-existent and her one chance at love is many years in the past.

Felice is married to a struggling artist and becoming increasingly worried about her teenage son, Charles. Working as the Arts director at the magazine, she has appreciated that Grace understands the demands of parenthood, but now that Lucky is in the position of power, nothing is certain.

All four women vie for power and glamour, while fantasizing about love and weddings in Susan Schneider’s sardonic and hilarious look at the bridal industry and magazine publishing in New York City. Schneider, a bridal industry editor and writer herself, entertains the reader with the back-stabbing, competitive world of weddings played out between women who are not afraid to go after their dreams.

None of the characters in this book are immediately likable. Grace initially comes off as a gritty snob who is not above using her assistants to make herself look good. Lucky at first appears willing to sell her soul (and possibly her body) for prestige and power. And Sarah and Felice are so wedded to their jobs (pun intended) that their personal lives and families suffer. But, eventually Schneider redeems these four women, by exposing their weaknesses, fears, and finally their hearts.

The strength of the novel is its tongue-in-cheek humor. I especially loved the Human Resources character Nadia Milosovici and her crew of security assistants who are always happy to escort fired employees from the building.

Following Desmarie is Nadia Milosovici’s underling from Guillotine Central, the Harpy – no one know her real name – a walking nightmare with a receding hairline and an indefinably bad smell and prominent moles on her chin upon which a garden of curling coarse hairs flourish. – from The Wedding Writer, page 11 –

Schneider pokes fun at love, marriage and the aging process, keeping her novel light and entertaining while touching on more serious issues like emotional abandonment, and loneliness. The superficial world of money and prestige is characterized as a place of betrayal, pitfalls, and dissatisfaction – and yet beneath it all, friendships still flourish.

Despite the fact that Schneider wraps up all the story lines a little too neatly at the end, I enjoyed this juicy novel about love and power. Satiric, sharp-witted, and highly entertaining, The Wedding Writer will appeal to those who enjoy women’s fiction and are looking for a fun, summer read.

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Have YOU read this book? Leave me a comment with a link to your review and I’ll add it above.

FTC Disclosure: I received this novel from Diane Saarinen of the Saima Agency for review on my blog.


Susan Schneider has over 10 years of experience as a bridal magazine editor; formerly she was executive editor at Bridal Guide Magazine, a national consumer magazine for engaged women, and she was also executive editor at Conde Nast’s Modern Bride and at Elegant Bride. She covers everything wedding, from fashion to flowers to food to stationery, etiquette, registry and honeymoons. She especially enjoys writing true-life wedding stories. Her first novel, The Wedding Writer, draws on her expertise as a wedding writer and from her day-to-day contribution to the business of bridal. Learn more about Schneider by visiting the author’s website.

Want to Win a Copy of this Book?

Thanks to Diane Saarinen, I’m offering one copy of The Wedding Writer to one lucky winner.

  • Contest open to US and Canada addresses only.
  • Complete the survey (below) by June 30th, 5:00 pm (PST) – starred (*) questions must be answered for your entry to be counted.
  • I’ll randomly choose a winner and announce their name on my blog by July 1st (as well as email the winner)


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    • Serena on June 23, 2011 at 02:12

    I haven’t read this book, but I like tongue-in-cheek humor. Thanks for the review…is this three-tiered rating system a new one for you? I like it.

  1. Great review! Couldn’t you just see this as a movie?

  2. This does sound like a really fun book and one that would be perfect for the beach. I am glad that you enjoyed it and recommended it to me, as I probably would not have heard of it anywhere else. Thanks!

    • Wendy on June 27, 2011 at 06:20

    Serena: I’ve been trying out this new rating system for a couple of months now – and I like it because it allows me to rate different aspects of a book. Glad you like it too 🙂

    Julie: This would make a great movie!

    Heather: Definitely a fun beach read 🙂

    • Serena on June 27, 2011 at 09:03

    I like the new rating system a lot. I have a hard time rating books regardless of what I’m considering.

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