Monday, 18 April 2016

Review: The Year We Turned Forty by Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke

If you could repeat one year of your life, what would you do differently? This heartwarming and hilarious novel from the authors of The Status of All Things and Your Perfect Life features three best friends who get the chance to return to the year they turned forty—the year that altered all of their lives, in ways big and small—and also get the opportunity to change their future.

Jessie loves her son Lucas more than anything, but it tears her up inside that he was conceived in an affair that ended her marriage to a man she still loves, a man who just told her he's getting remarried. This time around, she’s determined to bury the secret of Lucas’ paternity, and to repair the fissures that sent her wandering the first time.

Gabriela regrets that she wasted her most fertile years in hot pursuit of a publishing career. Yes, she’s one of the biggest authors in the world, but maybe what she really wanted to create was a family. With a chance to do it again, she’s focused on convincing her husband, Colin, to give her the baby she desires.

Claire is the only one who has made peace with her past: her twenty-two year old daughter, Emily, is finally on track after the turmoil of adolescence, and she's recently gotten engaged, with the two carat diamond on her finger to prove it. But if she’s being honest, Claire still fantasizes about her own missed opportunities: a chance to bond with her mother before it was too late, and the possibility of preventing her daughter from years of anguish. Plus, there’s the man who got away—the man who may have been her one true love.

But it doesn’t take long for all three women to learn that re-living a life and making different decisions only leads to new problems and consequences—and that the mistakes they made may, in fact, have been the best choices of all…

Paperback, 336 pages
Expected publication: April 26th 2016 by Washington Square Press

Terri's Thoughts

I received and advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  The expected publication date is April 26th, 2016.

I must admit that this story fascinated me simply due to the name of it.  As I am currently (shhh don't tell anyone) in the same year, I thought I simply had to read it.

The idea is simple.  The ladies have a chance to relive the year they turned forty.  At the end of the year, they return to their regular lives or stay in their new loves.  Who would not want a chance for a do-over?  I am sure we all have times in our lives where we think we would make different decisions if we were able to do it all over again.  I can think of many for me.

As suggested in the synopsis, sometimes making different decisions doesn't necessarily make things better.  It only changes the path but does not solve all of the problems.

I enjoyed watching how each of the characters learned a little bit about themselves during their due over year.  The things that were important to them and what they really needed in life was not necessarily what they thought it would be.

This is a story about friendship, families and people who are flawed.  The characters were believable in the fact that none of them were perfect and they all made mistakes.  Overall a good read!

About the Authors

      Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke have been best friends for 25 years and survived high school and college together. Liz lives in San Diego, CA with her husband and two children. Lisa, a former talk show producer, now lives in Chicago, IL with her husband, daughter and two bonus children.

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