by Taylor Jenkins Reid
I started reading this novel soon after Serena Williams retired and when I had tennis on my brain. Carrie is not Serena but there is no doubt that tennis has defined her life. As the story opens, Carrie is at the U.S. Open waiting to see if her long held record for most wins will be shattered. From here the book moves back in time to when she first began playing and goes forward to the time of the book’s title.
I understand the basics of tennis but don’t have the knowledge base to know how accurate the descriptions in the matches played were. I know that they were deeply involving and that I always wondered how Carrie would do.
This novel, however, is not just about Carrie’s tennis but is also about Carrie. She has a rather hard and brittle shell and most although most everything about her has been about tennis, she has things to figure out. Readers get to know the people around her; there are those that she lets in to some degree. The most important one is her father who has shared Carrie’s dream. Another is a player on the male circuit named Bowe and, of course, many of the women players.
Along with a page turning story, this novel offers some food for thought. Are we our accomplishments? Does winning mean everything? How is it to have to deal with being in a constant limelight? What happens when a game that one started to play out of love becomes so dominant? No spoilers for the end of the book. Find out for yourself what happens to Carrie.
I recommend this title to tennis lovers, Taylor Jenkins Reid’s fan base and those who enjoy an involving story.
Many thanks to NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group for this title. All opinions are my own.
Pub date: 30 August 2022
From the Publisher
“The books in Reid’s famous women quartet stand alone. . . . But each of the books centers a vibrant protagonist managing the tensions between her glamorous life in the public eye and the pressures she feels in private . . . with Reid meticulously collecting minute yet meaningful details to help build immersive worlds”—TIME
“Carrie Soto [Is Back] . . . is like other sports novels in which underdogs punch, volley, bat and birdie their way to victory or additional defeat, but it goes beyond this to explore sexism and racism in the tennis world in the 1990s. . . . This novel will grab you. You’ll tear through blow-by-blow descriptions of championship matches on some of the most famous tennis courts in the world. . . .”—The Washington Post
“An epic story about bravery, endurance, but also the power of vulnerability.”—BuzzFeed
“Reid . . . draws on the lives of actual tennis pros (think Serena, Sharapova) to build a world of believable rivalries and intrigue infused with the whiplash suspense of a nail-biting tennis match.”—People (Book of the Week)
“Nearly every Taylor Jenkins Reid novel reads like a survey course in some flagrantly glamorous specialty and era. . . . Come for the King Richard–level attention to the art of the game; stay for the more personal soap operas unfolding off the court, and the final score.”—Entertainment Weekly