This Beautiful Life
by Helen Schulman
Harper, 2011. 222 pgs. Fiction
The Bergamots have a comfortable life in New York City, until one day their fifteen-year-old son Jake receives an email from an eighth-grade admirer with a sexually explicit video she has made for him. Unsure of what to do, he forwards the video to a friend, who then forwards it to another friend. Within hours, it’s gone viral, all over the school, the city, the world. The ensuing scandal threatens to shatter the Bergamots’ sense of security and identity, and, ultimately, their happiness.
This book has an interesting premise and the writing is very good. However, the book left me feeling frustrated and I felt that the ending was weak in comparison to the rest of the book. The book is about the ways in which people miscommunicate with each other and let each other down, and it can be hard to read about people making stupid choices and not doing anything to correct their mistakes.