**A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK**
In a sophisticated romp through the tribulations and joys of marriage and friendship, a group of college friends reunites two decades after graduation.
After the sudden death of Douglas, once the ringleader of a clique of self-styled wits, his four best friends are summoned to his Catskills estate to mourn his passing. Responding to a mysterious sense of emergency in the call, Ned flies in from San Francisco with his wife Nina in furious pursuit; they're at a critical point in their attempts to conceive and she won't let a funeral get in the way. It is Nina who gives us a pointed, irreverent commentary as the men reconvene, while Ned tries to understand what it was that made this clutch of souls his friends to begin with--before time, sex, work, and the brutal quirks of history reshaped them. Filled with unexpected, funny, telling aper us, Norman Rush's Subtle Bodies is also a deeply moving exploration of the meanings of life.