Getting to Happy By Terry McMillan

From the author of many books including the prequel to this one, Waiting to Exhale, this is the continuation of the story of four best friends who live and work in Phoenix, Arizona. I have to say I am a sucker for the gal pal books and movies. We need each other a whole lot more than the world would have us believe and I think these relationships can be very healthy for us. That said this book is obviously well written but goodness, the trauma that these ladies deal with not only then but years later in this book is a little excessive. I suppose for the story to be as dramatic as possible the answer is yes, they do. As a side note, one of the things that I actually didn’t like in this book was the use of foul language between the ladies. Do people really speak to each other in that way? I know we are prone to drop a bomb occasionally, but really, in every sentence??

Anyway the character development isn’t quite as good as in her other books, but I think we are supposed to already have an idea of who the women are so it isn’t pushed. The book starts a few years after Exhale finishes. Life has changed quite drastically for all of our heroines with kids, divorces, work, extended family etc. etc. All of that is relatively realistic and I understand the need to continue on with these characters – I like them so the author must feel a certain affinity to them I’m sure. It is interesting to me how we think that when we hit our 40s and 50s we feel we should have certain things figured out and we don’t. That is one of the things I do like about this book – the author is very transparent about how we still have to work on things and it is okay to fall apart at times; it is how we deal with the issues that seem to come up again and again that seem to perplex us. Go ahead and read this if you want some chick lit with a little more oomph and substance.

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