TRIANGLES by Ellen Hopkins
Hardback copy courtesy of Atria Books and Good Reads
Life is complicated. Life brings joy. It also brings pain. Marriage is a fragile thread. Sometimes it brings happiness. Sometimes it unravels and leads to unfaithfulness. Families are torn apart, betrayed by those they love as they search for what is missing in their lives.
In author Ellen Hopkins’s first novel for adults, Triangles, we meet three women who are dealing with drastic changes in their lives: Marissa, Holly, and Andrea. To me, Marissa’s story is the most touching. How does a woman deal with a dying child, a gay son, and a husband that’s unfaithful? Then there’s her sister, Andrea, a single mother who finds herself interested in her friend Holly’s husband. Holly, who just wanted to be “safe” is now looking for success other than being a mom. The children and teens involved, each with their own story, add to the tension in the families. Reading this novel sure makes me appreciate the calmness of my life.
Beautiful poetic verse paints a revealing picture of a side of life that brings more feelings of guilt than of satisfaction. In my little world it’s hard to imagine people who actually live like the characters in this story live. I know they do, but I’ve never thought much about it, until now. This book has opened my eyes to what can go terribly wrong in a marriage and how it effects everyone involved. The scenes are intense and leave little to the imagination as the antagonists follow their desires, giving little thought to the consequences that are sure to occur. The characters are well developed and I wanted them to find happiness, although without hurting others. A good novel brings out emotions in the reader, in my opinion. Ms. Hopkins’s story certainly does that for me. I was angry at the characters for doing such dumb things. I cried along with the characters when their hearts were breaking. This novel is definitely for adults because of the graphic scenes. If you like happy endings, you won’t find one here. You will, however, find hope, I think, and come away from the story with a new sense of why people sometimes do the things they do, at least I have. We never know the secrets individuals carry with them, the secrets they keep to themselves. Triangles is a story that will stay with you even after you’ve read the final page.