Monday, May 18, 2015

Review: The Secret Life of Book Club by Heather Woodhaven

The Secret Life of Book Club by Heather Woodhaven
Published January 31st 2015 by Blue Azalea Press
Genre: Women's Fiction
My Source: I received a copy in exchange for an honest review

Description: Book Club Just Got Real.

Jeanine Phelps is tired of reading about other women who grab life and have epiphanies. She challenges her book club to live like the heroines in the books they love.

At first, seizing the day is pure fun until it generates an upset in each of their lives:
Jeanine’s husband is so inspired by her new vitality it triggers a bizarre mid-life crisis involving tacos.
Paula, the model PTA soccer mom, starts fighting with her man about the family printing business until she’s drawn back to her secret passion.
Kate, a single mom and teacher, can’t figure out if the rekindled friendship with the new museum creator is worth the romantic risk.
Anne, a mother of four babies, works to hold the book club together while trying to figure out her own identity.

When everyone wants to quit the challenge, the media’s spotlight makes it impossible. Can they rely on each other while keeping their priorities? And more importantly, is their sanity worth the chance to each become a heroine in her own life? 
My Review:  I belong to a book club and we're all so different. It was fun to read about these four women and what makes them unique. What really hit me is that each and every person has challenges and we all need that out to help us cope with them.

The story follows Jeanine, a dental assistant who struggles with her husbands mid-life crisis. Her life is in a rut and they're just in survival mode, but breaking out of that mold disrupts her organized life and throws her for a loop. We meet Paula, a woman with a big secret. She just wants to feel appreciated and secure. Kate is a teacher and single mom of two, who just can't get over her college crush. And Anne, a mom to four kids under four. She seems to be the most secure in her marriage and strives to find peace with things that happen in her life. I tried to find a character to identify with and it was tough because they each have a little piece of me.

I really liked this idea. Instead of just reading and living life vicariously through fictional characters, these women decide to take a challenge to help them experience new things. They each take turns choosing something that goes with each letter of the alphabet--for example, "G" for glow-in-the-dark golf, which was my favorite because I laughed so hard what happened. This challenge really stretched them and forced them to re-evaluate their lives and to rediscover themselves. I laughed, I cried, and felt everything in between. Not only is the story entertaining, but I found myself thinking about my life and the changes I can make to make life better. It really is easy to get stuck in doing the same old thing day in and day out, year after year. I really enjoyed it all!

Content:  mild language; mild religious elements (a verse of scripture helps a character and it mentions them attending church); mild romance; no violence. Clean!

My Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

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About the Author:
Heather Woodhaven 
Heather Woodhaven earned her pilot's license, rode a hot air balloon over the safari lands of Kenya, assisted an engineer with a medical laser in a Haitian mission, parasailed over Caribbean seas, lived through an accidental detour onto a black diamond ski trail in the Aspens and snorkeled among sting rays before becoming a mother of three and wife of one. Now Heather spends her days celebrating laughter, adding to her impressive list of embarrassing moments, and raising a family of aspiring comedians who perform nightly at her table. She channels her love for adventure into writing characters who find themselves in extraordinary circumstances--whether running for their lives or battling the insanities of life.  

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