By Rebecca Kauffman
5 out of 5 stars
A little group of neighborhood kids call themselves the Gunners after a name on the mailbox at an old deserted home. This becomes their go-to place over the years. It begins when they are quite small and into the teen years until one of them, Sally, cuts them all off completely. No one knows why. And now they are gathered together again for her funeral. Sally jumped to her death without a note, without anyone knowing really why.
Mikey has never left the town of Lackawanna, New York. He is slowly losing his eyesight from early onset macular degeneration. I think Mikey was the heart of the group. He was searching for a family because his father was rather standoffish and he never knew his mother. (Something that I figured out kind of early on but still got to me when I finally read it) He and Sally were very close as youngsters and she was protective of him. Alice is loud and funny and has a who cares attitude. (But really she does) She arrives with her young girlfriend. Jimmy was the charismatic, smart one. He too has his secrets. Lynn comes with her boyfriend Issa. They both run the AA in their town. Sam was the big, galoot of the bunch. All of them reunite for the night at Jimmy’s big cabin, which from the description, I want to live in. Stories are told, Truths come out. Memories are relived.
But the story also follows the afterward. We get to see them reunite again for a happy occasion.
I could not put this lovely book down. The story just flowed perfectly from person to person. Mikey, of course, had my heart. As much as I loved the whole story of friendship, my favorite two chapters were about Mikey and his dad together. They were quietly beautiful and had me in tears.
There was laughter and tears throughout. There were a few light bulb moments. It was everything the perfect story needed to be. A little reminiscent of The Big Chill, which is my favorite movie, so if you loved that, you will love this. Thank you Rebecca Kauffman for this beauty.
I received a copy of this book from Edelweiss and Counterpoint and I thank them.