The Rachel Incident

by Caroline O’Donoghue is a charming novel about college friendships and first love. It’s 2009 in Cork, Ireland, in the midst of the recession, and Rachel is an English literature student worried about the bleak job market as she nears the end of her university days. Meanwhile, she’s working at a bookstore, forming a close bond with her coworker and eventual roommate, James. Rachel’s life becomes more complicated when she falls in love with her married professor, Dr. Fred Byrne.  Her attempts to seduce him wind up entangling both her and James in the complex web of deceptions holding together Dr. Byrne’s marriage. The book is honest, funny, and heartbreaking: fans of Sally Rooney should pick it up!