Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Julie's Review: Wallflower in Bloom

Summary: From the acclaimed bestselling author of Must Love Dogs comes a winning and witty new novel about a woman who emerges from the shadow of her overbearing family and finds herself “dancing with the stars.” Deirdre Griffin has a great life; it’s just not her own. She’s the around-the-clock personal assistant to her charismatic, high-maintenance, New Age guru brother, Tag. As the family wallflower, her only worth seems to be as gatekeeper to Tag at his New England seaside compound. Then Deirdre’s sometime boyfriend informs her that he is marrying another woman, who just happens to be having the baby he told Deirdre he never wanted. While drowning her sorrows in Tag’s expensive vodka, Deirdre decides to use his massive online following to get herself voted on as a last-minute Dancing with the Stars replacement. It’ll get her back in shape, mentally and physically. It might even get her a life of her own. Deirdre’s fifteen minutes of fame have begun. Irresistible and offbeat, Wallflower in Bloom is an original and deeply satisfying story of having the courage to take a leap into the spotlight, no matter where you land.  
Review: Wallflower in Bloom is one women's struggle to come out of the shadows of not only her famous brother but her overbearing family. When she was growing up everything was discussed around the dinner family but often Deirdre felt that what she said was ignored or dismissed. Even as an adult she has felt that way. When Tag steps a bit too far into her life, Deirdre has enough. She gets really drunk and enters herself as a contestant on Dancing with the Stars. She gets in by using her brother's fame but for once she wants to do it all on her own.

I liked Deirdre but I didn't love her. Sometimes I wanted to tell her to quit whining and that she needed to just shut up and start her own living her own life. She used her family as a shield so that she wouldn't have to step out of the shadows. She might not have liked being the family wallflower but in a lot of ways, she created that situation.

Her family annoyed me. From her parents who were still stuck in the 60s to her brother who came up with sayings on a daily basis. Yes, some of them were good but most of the time I felt that he was just feeding people lines. Tag was self-centered and selfish and he probably would have been anyway but his family fed into that by making him the star.

This is my first Clare Cook novel but I will probably check out her other books or a future book at some point.

As a side-note, I really love the cover of this book. The colors just pop right off the page. It is gorgeous. 

Final Take: 3.5/5

Thanks to the SheReads Book Club for the novel.



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