Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner
I've been a Weiner fan since Good in Bed, which was released *gasp* ten years ago! I was delighted when her publicity offered me an advanced read of her latest novel, Then Came You.
This novel focuses on what Weiner does best - write about women, from all walks of life, with trials and tribulations of their own, and while remaining flawed, remaining human and cheer-worthy as well.
The basic setup is this: four women are loosely tied through a baby. There is Jules, the egg donor, Annie, the surrogate mother, India, the desperate mother, and Bettina, India's reluctant step-daughter. All are as different as can be, all are at different places in their lives, and all have various levels of investment in the baby. You find yourself cheering for one of the characters, then jumping allegiance as the POV (point of view) of each chapter changes to another character. Some you want to smack upside the head a few times, some need a hug - all need sympathy. But always, Weiner keeps the women relevant to themselves and each other, and though the ending is inevitably happy (and to some, probably, sappy), the journey to get there is rife with troubles that only the women can sort out (the men in the novel are truly in the background on this one).
I really enjoyed this novel - I found it easy to read and easy to get into, and I liked seeing how Weiner danced these women around each other until they found the safe ground, even throwing in a few "huh! didn't see that coming!" moments along the way. A satisfying read - some would say "chick lit", but it felt more like "women's lit" to me. Recommended!
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