Written by screenwriter Rebecca Serle, I could picture this novel being written for the screen. In Five Years is a short story (less than 300 pages) set in New York about Dannie and David, whose relationship seems too good to be true.
They’re a hardworking, ambitious couple with a somewhat predictable start to the book: David has a well-paid job, she has the job of her dreams and secures a role at the law firm she has always wanted to work for; they find their perfect apartment that suits them; AND she perfectly predicts how David will propose to her, which he does to the detail. And of course, she accepts (not a spoiler).
Then there’s Bella, Dannie’s demure, bonnie best friend; an artist and gallery owner, not forgetting hopeless romantic. A perfect New York gals friendship.
Despite Dannie’s perfect life, she has a ‘dream’ (or a miniscule time travel episode) on the night of her engagement of her in five years to the day; in a different apartment, with an unfamiliar ring on her hand – accompanied by a handsome stranger, Aaron.
Her idea of perfection soon seems to wain as Bella introduces her new boyfriend ‘Greg’, who she is convinced is the one – that is until Dannie realises ‘Greg’ is Aaron! Their relationship is frosty as she is reminded of her ‘dream’ as he becomes an important part of Bella’s life. He on the other hand is unaware of why she is so cold towards him. Will she tell anyone about her dream of Aaron?
I quite liked the novel, as I don’t usually go for novels set across the pond, although I felt Serle rushed through the novel, jumping ahead 4 and a half years where Dannie and David still haven’t got married. Plus, Bella is ill.
Maybe there is a reason Dannie hasn’t married David yet, despite them being busy. Does she have love for someone else?
I felt there was still room for Serle to have adapted the novel a bit more by providing some more of what happened in the 4.5 year jump, as it seemed she was in a bit of a rush to finish, as it ends quite abruptly, ends being tied up quite quickly. However, it is both a sad and happy read set in one of my favourite places in the world!
rating – 4/5 (5 if time was slowed a bit more instead of skipping. It seemed like Serle was in a rush to finish it! However, at the same time I liked that I could race through it!)
genre – romance, fiction, miniscule time travel element