Sunday 31 March 2019

Book talk on a snowy morning... YIKES!

Yes, there’s a mountain of the fluffy white stuff outside this morning, despite the heavy rains yesterday that washed away all the old snow.  I’m sure this will be short-lived, as it is supposed to be sunny and mild over the next few days, with the temperatures reaching 11 degrees on Wednesday.  I guess I’ll have to pull out my boots again to go for a walk this afternoon. For now, I’m enjoying my steaming cup of chai tea and delicious Date Bar - yum!
I read Just Like Family by Kate Hilton last week.  This was a book that I saw in a bookstore when I was in Toronto over the March Break that looked interesting enough to read, but not interesting enough to buy, and I’m glad I chose to borrow instead of purchase.  Set mainly in Toronto, it tells the story of Avery Graham, a forty-something woman whose life seems to be running along smoothly, until suddenly it is not. As Chief of Staff to Mayor Peter Haines, Avery’s days are filled with meetings and calls, and she rarely has time to see her long-time partner Matt, but she’s ok with this arrangement.  She loves the demands of her job and the hustle and bustle of her busy life. But when Matt proposes, Avery is forced to look at her life more closely and contemplate what a lifetime commitment to him might mean and how it might impact her present circumstances, including her relationship with Peter, for whom she works and to whom she has been devoted since childhood.  And just when she needs their support, she realizes that her long-time friendships with the two women who matter most to her have fallen by the wayside due to her recent lifestyle choices. How will she resolve her dilemma and make a choice that will satisfy everyone and still make her happy? This novel by Toronto author Hilton was a good domestic novel, a “women’s” book that dealt with the difficulties of juggling a career and home life and finding a balance that will work in the short-term and also be the right choice in the long-term.  It demonstrated strong writing skills, and some of the imagery was dead-on. I almost hate to criticize, because it was a good novel, but I found it a bit clichéd, and I had difficulty relating to Avery. However, this novel got really strong reviews, and Hilton is a bestselling author, so if you are in the mood for a domestic novel that explores the lifestyle and choices of one woman, you could do worse than this. (I’m just now thinking that maybe I didn’t love it because I don’t normally read these types of novels, but I LOVED The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D by Nichole Bernier, and it is a similar type of novel).
That’s all for today.  Get outside, or just stay in and avoid the snow, whatever you decide.  I think I’ll try going for a short-ish walk then get to my next book club selection for next weekend - we are having the author come and speak to us, so I want to really pay attention to the novel and make lots of notes!  Oh, this selection, the Deserters by Pamela Mulloy, is also a novel about women’s choices, and it is amazing!!
Bye for now…

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