A modern classic first published in 1978 that is as much a sophisticated romantic comedy about the love between two partners as it is a novel about the powerful bonds shared by family members, friends, colleagues and confidants. 

“A comedy of manners that reminds us that manners are comic and should be enjoyed as such.” —The New York Times


Guido and Vincent, best friends (and third cousins), aren’t expecting to fall head-over-heels in love, but that is exactly what happens. Guido is smitten with Holly, a dazzling young woman who chafes at the idea of complacency, while Vincent falls for Misty, a work colleague with an acerbic sense of humor who seems as uninterested in romance as she is in Vincent (at first). In the months that follow, both couples will experience the rituals of courtship, jealousy, estrangement, family entanglements, and other perils of the heart as they try to find love in spite of themselves.

Colwin is a master of portraying the messiness of life: here, in hilarious and endearing prose, she follows these two improbable pairs, and their families, as they navigate and ultimately find happiness together—not all the time, but for most of it. 

With a foreword by Katherine Heiny.
“Laurie Colwin was the best kind of master: human and humorous, full of wisdom and love. When am I happy all the time? When I have a stack of Laurie Colwin books beside me.” —Emma Straub, bestselling author of All Adults Here

“Luminous . . . a book that lingers sweetly and hilariously in the memory.” —The Dallas Morning News

“A wise, bighearted book by a wise, bighearted writer. A deft and funny one, too.” —The Washington Post

“Colwin is a bard of burgeoning adulthood.” —Rachel Syme, The New Yorker

“A comedy of manners that reminds us that manners are comic and should be enjoyed as such.” —The New York Times

“Laurie Colwin’s great subject was happiness—whether romantic, familial, domestic, or culinary—and she managed to write about it with both élan and emotional depth. . . . How wonderful it is that her books are still with us.” —The Christian Science Monitor