Agreed, men should not read chick lit, but the plot sounded intriguing and the book was Amazon’s “best book of the month” and received incredibly positive reviews. It is just flabbergasting and unbelievable, what some of the reviews say about the book. The only explanation I can come up with is that the majority of chick lit is so bad that this book appears to be great by comparison.
The book is full of outdated clichés and women are portrayed in such an old-fashioned way that any modern woman (at least all the women, I know) should be insulted:
- Holding successful Tupperware Parties is the pinnacle of female achievement and all the women will envy you for that.
- Designing funny Easter-Hats for the Easter parade of your children is the highlight of the year
- Having a spotless home and a nicely organized pantry is the essence of life
- Sex with your husband is plain fare, but an affair with the gorgeous looking gym teacher with the great body is invigorating and incredibly exciting. Of course the guy rides a motorbike as well to complete the cliché. Naturally your husband should never learn about that.
To be fair, men are not much better off:
- Men are simple minded and can be jerked around easily. Husbands would do anything just to be allowed to stay with their children. Somehow children seem to be the property of women and they decide, how much time a father can spend with his offspring.
- Men are incredible vain, if you insult their pride, they easily go over the edge.
- Men remain boys at heart. They like to fix things in the house and women have to clean up the mess and call the plumber, electrician etc. to get everything back into working condition.
The plot is unreal and full of the most unlikely coincidences.
Cecilia Fitzpatric is the perfect wife and mother and lives in a perfect world with the perfect husband and 3 perfect daughters. Her perfect life is threatened to come to an end, when roaming around on the attic, she finds a letter from her husband, John-Paul, to be opened only in the event of his death. Of course she opens it and has the shock of her life.
Tess O'Leary learns that her husband Will, and her cousin and best friend, Felicity, have fallen in love. Worst of all, Will and Felicity expect from Tess to accept that and to go on with life as before. Hearing this, Tess travels with her son to Sidney to live with her mother. Of course it is no surprise that she meets her old boyfriend there, Connor Whitby, who still seems to have feelings for her.
Connor Whitby is the PE teacher in the school, where Tess enrolls her son. Another surprise, Rachel Crowley, the school secretary, is convinced that Connor is the man, who 30 years ago killed her daughter.
Step by step the reader learns that the lives of all these characters are closely linked and the murder of Rachel’s daughter is not forgotten.
Apart from the content, the story is nicely told and in some parts quite humorous. I am not sure, whether all of the humor is intended, but you will get a laugh out of it anyway. Hardcore chick lit fans will love the book, I did not.