Happy People

by William Landers,
ISBN: 0968362907

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First Novels - Slippery Moves
by Eva Tihanyi

The same, unfortunately, cannot be said about Happy People (Sinking Hill Publishing, 283 pages, $12.95 paper), a stereotypical high-school reunion story by William Landers. Bill, a software engineer, takes his new girlfriend (a knock-out stripper) to revisit the old gang, the class of `80. They meet up with Bill's former sweetheart, Wendy, his old best buddy, Bob, and various other characters from the past-the usual cast in the usual circumstances: they're angst-ridden, settled for the most part into domestic routine, older and feeling it.

The group spends their reunion weekend smoking pot, drinking copious amounts of alcohol, making inane conversation, and checking one another out. Bill even goes so far as to convince himself that breaking up with Wendy in high school was a mistake. Now he wants her to leave her husband and take off with him to Vegas.

The only surprise in this otherwise banal, predictable novel is that it doesn't have the expected fairy-tale ending.


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