Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Julie's Review: The Best of Us

Summary: An all-expense-paid week at a luxury villa in Jamaica—it’s the invitation of a lifetime for a group of old college friends. All four women are desperate not just for a reunion, but for an escape: Tina is drowning under the demands of mothering four young children. Allie is shattered by the news that a genetic illness runs in her family. Savannah is carrying the secret of her husband’s infidelity. And, finally, there’s Pauline, who spares no expense to throw her wealthy husband an unforgettable thirty-fifth birthday celebration, hoping it will gloss over the cracks already splitting apart their new marriage. Languid hours on a private beach, gourmet dinners, and late nights of drinking kick off an idyllic week for the women and their husbands. But as a powerful hurricane bears down on the island, turmoil swirls inside the villa, forcing each of the women to reevaluate everything she knows about her friends—and herself. ~amazon.com

Review: You know what I love about Ms. Pekkanen's books the most is her ability to create extremely likable characters that at times you want to shake, smack, hug and love. You know, kind of like your friends in real life. The Best of Us follows her previous novels with an engaging look at female relationships and friendships. We quickly meet Allie and Tina who have been best friends since grade school and still live only 5 minutes away from each other. They are invited on a trip of a lifetime to spend a week long vacation in Jamaica with their other college friends, Savannah and Dwight.

Each woman is going through her own trials and tribulations. Tina is a stay at home mom with 4 young children who feels lost and depressed. She just wants a little help from her husband when he gets home from work and the ability to have some time for herself every now and then. Allie has just received some debilitating medical information about her father, that she's not sure how to process. Savannah's husband left her for a younger woman and she's trying her damnedest not to let it get her down but her insecurities cause her to act out in the wrong manner. And then there is Dwight's wife, Pauline, who is the outsider of the group but who wants to do something special for her husband for his birthday.

Throw in some alcohol, a beach location, insecurities, issues, a hurricane bearing down and you end up with possible combustion. What Ms. Pekkanen does is show that no marriage, no relationship is perfect. It might look perfect from the outside but most have problems even if they aren't apparent. Not only that but the one friend that seems to have it together is probably the one who is in need of someone to lean on.

I firmly believe that what makes her characters so real is that we can see a little of ourselves in each of her characters. Just like you see the flaws and favorable characteristics in yourself, you see them in the ladies as well.

If you've never read Ms. Pekkanen before, then The Best of Us is a great place to start. If you've read her before, then you won't be disappointed.

The The Best of Us is out on 4/9/13!

Final Take: 4.75/5

Thanks to Sarah and her publicist for sending me a copy!



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