Feeling Bookish

Why you need to add Sloane Crosley's ‘The Clasp' to your must-read pile

I fell in love with Sloane Crosley from the moment I laid eyes on her in 2008. I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but I couldn’t help it: Her debut collection of non-fiction essays, I Was Told There’d Be Cake, piqued my fancy — and the book more than lived up to its casing. Crosley’s writing was unlike anything I’d ever read — funny, observant, nuanced, relatable. Her stories were clever and honest, and I was immediately hooked. When her follow-up collection, How Did You Get This Number, came out in 2010, I added it to my wish list immediately. Unsurprisingly, it did not disappoint.

When I heard Crosley would be releasing a new book this year — her first novel — I knew I had to get my hands on it. The Clasp, out today, follows the story of three college friends reunited on a quest to find what could be the most priceless piece of jewelry of all time (. . . if it exists). Like her non-fiction work, the book is honest and hilarious and compelling in turns — and it’s an absolute must-read.

Beyond the fantastical plot, Crosley hits on some very real things in The Clasp, and she tackles each of them with grace. In particular, Crosley nails the awkwardness and heartbreak of drifting apart from old friends, something all-too-real for most 20-somethings. While the dynamic between the three protagonists is too complex to reduce here, Crosley perfectly shows that adulthood occasionally leads us away from the people we thought were forever. It’s just a part of life: Sometimes, all it takes is a little adventure to remind us why we were friends in the first place.

The book is a fast read, but only because Crosley’s writing is easy to savor. While it’s driven by plot, it’s the relationships in The Clasp that truly shine — and it is chock-full of surprising and wonderfully tender moments. The Clasp is about growing up and not always liking the person you’ve become; it’s about friendship in all of its messy, imperfect forms; it’s about unrequited love and taking chances. It’s a reminder that it’s never too late to fix things, to find something to be passionate about. I fell in love with Crosley’s writing in 2008, but The Clasp solidified that love.

You can buy the book for yourself right here — and if you, too, find yourself judging a book by its cover sometimes, this one just happens to come in three colors.

(Image via Amazon.)

Related stories:

An interview with Sloane Crosley

Why you should read ‘How Did You Get This Number’