The Intermission

Elyssa Friedland

Berkley (Penguin-Random House)

Cass and Jonathan Coyne have it all. A swanky New York City apartment, good friends, and enough wealth to do what they want, when they want. Although Cass resigned from a leading theatrical design company following the death of its owner, she and Jonathan contemplate having a baby in her time away from work. Six years into their marriage and they seem set for life – so why does Cass feel so restless and dissatisfied?

. . . a thought-provoking exposé of a modern marriage . . .

Part of it stems from her childhood. Jonathan had a typical Boston Brahmin upbringing with all the associated WASP wealth and privileges. Cass suffered through a difficult childhood complete with negligent blue collar parents and a messy divorce. In spite of her achievements since, she feels unworthy, jealous and confused. Sleep eludes her, and sex turns into a once every two weeks event. She senses Jonathan isn’t so deeply in love with her as he once was.

Cass proposes a trial separation, a six month intermission in their marriage. Jonathan is confused but realizes a break may be just what they need. He’s been less than faithful, and his eye wanders toward other women. Cass heads for the West Coast, leaving him in New York. Both meet other people, but the draw they have toward each other is strong. A near-tragedy brings Cass and Jonathan together again. They realize what they risk losing – but is it too late to turn back?

In The Intermission, Elyssa Friedland has created a thought-provoking exposé of a modern marriage, warts and all, told from alternating viewpoints.

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