Jessica Keener's Night Swim is one of those books you want so badly to love and can't quite get there. A period drama set in the 1970s, Night Swim follows Sarah Kunitz as she navigate the dissolution of her family. From the moneyed pill-popping and possibly partner swapping lifestyle of her parents to her mother's eventual death, this is the story of a family firmly in a downward slide into disaster.The writing is lovely, and Keener manages to make the reader believe the characters and the setting, something that often falls flat with not-so-distant-past works. Unfortunately, the writing isn't quite enough to overlook the predictable plot: girl loses her mother and everything she knows about her family, sleeps with two different guys. It's the 1970s. Gee, what could the outcome here possibly be. When you add in the too-quick and too-pat ending, it feels almost as if Keener herself was frustrated with where the story was ending, and just wanted to be done with it. The rushed ending stands in stark contrast to the pacing of the rest of the novel, which brings to mind lazy summer days and drinks make with a thick, sweet simple syrup.Night Swim is one of those books that will stick in my head as an "if only": There is a ton of missed potential here.