Never Have I Ever: My Life (So Far) Without a Date

Katie Heaney. Grand Central, $14 trade paper (255p) ISBN 978-1-4555-4467-7
A Judy Blume–meets–Carrie Bradshaw memoir about how, despite boys and growing up, friendship between women endures. Never mind that 25-year-old Katie Heaney and her friends’ sole topic of conversation is men: “I hope this book feels [like] you and I are hanging out, and I am drinking too much and talking to you… for a really long time,” she writes. In this, she succeeds. The problem with writing about absence—in this case, the absence of a love life—is self-evident: waiting, longing, and miscommunication do not make for a coherent story. Heaney’s therefore bland first book seems more like a blog than a memoir, beginning (as, being so young, perhaps she must) with her manifestly normal elementary school years and progressing through grad school (we’re never told what she is studying). “There must be differences between the way a fourteen-year-old acts toward a boy she likes versus the way a twenty-five-year-old does, but I am still struggling to understand what they are supposed to be,” Heaney admits. One can’t help but wish she’d waited a decade or two before attempting memoir, or else cut a few R-rated sections and marketed it as YA. Agent: Allison Hunter, Inkwell. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 07/22/2013
Release date: 01/14/2014
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