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Advance reader reviews of The Red Book

The Red Book

A Novel

by Deborah Copaken Kogan

The Red Book
  • Critics' Opinion:

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  • Published in USA  Apr 2012
    368 pages
    Genre: Novels

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There are currently 26 member reviews
for The Red Book
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  • Dawn C. (Meridian, ID)


    The Red Book by Deborah Copaken Kogan
    Four roommates from Harvard all have very different lives and keep in touch by the Red Book that comes out every 5 years in which each alumni updates their life story in an autobiographical essay that makes up the class report. Much has changed for each of the girls since 1989 and everything becomes very real when they have their 20th class reunion.
  • Jinny K. (Fremont, CA)


    Satisfying Reunion Tale
    I just love this kind of book and really looked forward to reading it; I was not disappointed.

    The centerpiece of the story was a 20th reunion of four Harvard classmates, book-ended by synopses in their reunion chronicles called the Red Book.

    The story was well told, the characters, with all their charms and flaws, stayed true throughout the story and there was enough bittersweetness to prevent the ending Red Book entries from being too good to be true.

    Thoroughly engaging and enjoyable!
  • Vicki O. (Boston, MA)


    Pick this one up
    It’s the 20th reunion at Harvard for a group of diverse women friends whom we meet initially through their “Red Book” entries. This could have been a run of the mill novel but it is anything but. It’s a terrifically intelligent and funny novel with sharp observations about family, friendship, death, aging, secrets and infidelity. All the characters were very genuine and the dialogue natural, making for a thumbs up reading experience.
  • Susan S. (Lafayette, CA)


    An intelligent page-turner
    I loved this book. It's witty, intelligent, insightful, and a page-turner. The transformations the various characters had gone through and were continuing to go through were believable, and so were the characters themselves. And though there were a lot of happy endings, not everything was tied up with a neat little bow at the end (just like real life). I highly recommend this book.
  • Kathryn K. (Oceanside, CA)


    I loved this book!
    The Red Book, by Deborah Copaken Kogan is not the typical story about the reunion of best friends from college. Thankfully, neither is it “chick lit” -- a phenomenon that according the San Diego UT (2/12/12) is dying. The characters have depth and are well developed. I liked the fact that they are not cookie cut – all the same. The diversity of persons and the varied life styles, raises the quality of the read and enriches the novel. The plot is refreshingly realistic and interesting. Structured around entries found in Harvard’s, The Red Book, one is drawn into the lives of four friends, 20 years after a 1989 graduation. Like life, the book is at times very poignant -- full of how life just happens and also how we impact what happens. It is wise – and even funny! It will be on my short list for the book discussion groups I lead. I loved this book!
  • Mary S. (Pinson, AL)


    The Red Book is a Great Read
    I can’t remember when I have enjoyed a book as much as I enjoyed The Red Book. This is a great story of four intelligent roommates at their twentieth reunion weekend. Kogan expresses so well the feelings of a generation growing older and looking back at their younger selves. I love a book that gives you pause for thought. This will definitely be a great book club read.
  • Diane D. (Blairstown, NJ)


    Interesting Book!
    I found this book held my interest from beginning to end, even though (or maybe because) I had no personal knowledge of people who had gone to Harvard. It was good to be able to read their entries for the Red Book and then see how their lives played out at and beyond their 20th reunion.

    I felt as if this was a memoir, not a novel, which says a lot for the author's ability to bring her characters to life. I would recommend this book to anyone who would like a peek into the lives of those privileged enough to attend this school.
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