Other People’s Houses by Abbi Waxman
You never know what goes on behind closed doors until something as innocent as a forgotten cardboard toilet paper tube changes everything. Francis and Anne are best friends whose lives suddenly change forever one morning. (I recommend knocking, loudly, before walking into your neighbor’s house.) The ripple effects from a 10 second encounter pull an entire neighborhood into an unexpected and awkward series of events that none of them saw coming.
Hilarity, scandal and emotional upheaval are all parts of marriage and parenting in this entertaining novel by Abbi Waxman. Realistic and relatable, (the main character’s inner dialogue sounds a lot like she’s inside my head) Waxman’s tale of neighbors in an upscale California community could just as easily have taken place in my small NC town.
Indulging Your Revenge Fantasies
Who Needs Men Anyway by Victoria Cooke
Life doesn’t always go as planned. When Charlotte, Megan and Sam all face betrayal they ban together to recover. What better way to heal your wounds than with the thrill of revenge?
Cooke’s story reads a bit like Clueless (you know, that Alicia Silverstone movie), or the original version, Jane Austin’s Emma. The story centers around Charlotte, who starts out a bit entitled and well, ignorant. Charlotte will take an emotional journey that will teach her the real meaning of friendship and what is truly important in life. The novel contains a few too many coincidences and it’s a little over the top at times but a fun vacation read nonetheless. It could also be a decent manual for plotting against your nemesis.
Nostalgia and Friendship
Dreams of Falling by Karen White
Alternating between the story of three best friends, CeeCee, Bitty and Margaret, in the 1950’s and their lives in 2010, secrets are revealed and mysteries discovered as friends and family are brought together by tragic circumstances. Larkin left SC years ago vowing never to return, but an accident involving her mother sets into motion an unraveling of the past and a coming to terms with the present. Set in the lowlands of SC, the marshes and wildlife provide an alluring backdrop for a story of friendship, betrayal, love and forgiveness.
Prolific author Karen White pulled me so deeply into the story, I spent two days really angry with one of the characters. Shocked by the selfish decisions that affected everyone around her I took a short break before finishing the novel. Writing that powerful is what will make me seek out more of her work.