Beginner’s Greek

book coverHave you ever taken your seat on an airplane only to realize that the stranger buckled up next to you was the one?

Peter has. On a flight from New York to Los Angeles, Peter notices the lovely strawberry blonde next to him reading Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain. He immediately falls deeply, irreparably, head-over-heels in love. They only have five hours to connect. But she likes him too! As the plane lands, Holly takes a page from her book, writes her number on it, and tells Peter to call her while he’s in L.A.. But by the time Peter checks into his hotel room, he’s lost her number and his hopes of ever seeing his one true love again.

Don’t despair—the fated pair meets again a few years later in New York. Only this time she’s engaged to Peter’s best friend, Jonathan. And so begins this light, frothy comedy of manners. Beginner’s Greek is a witty, yet predictable, tale of mismatched and star-crossed lovers. The plot will be familiar to Jane Austen fans, but the modern setting and characters keeps it fresh and fun.

If you have a soft spot for romantic comedies, in print or on screen, Beginner’s Greek is sure to please. Peter’s charming neuroses reminded me of Woody Allen in Annie Hall. Everyone—except Peter and Holly—knows that the two are in love with each other and destined to be together. This reminded me of another favorite film, When Harry Met Sally. Indeed, this is one of those books that’s just begging to be made into a movie.


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