Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Hot Flash Club

The Hot Flash Club by Nancy Thayer

Synopsis from Barnes and Noble

Meet Faye, Marilyn, Alice, and Shirley. Four women with skills, smarts, and secrets—all feeling over the hill and out of the race. But in a moment of delicious serendipity, they meet and realize they share more than raging hormones and lost dreams. Now as the Hot Flash Club, where the topics of motherhood, sex, and men are discussed with double servings of chocolate cake, they vow to help each other . . . and themselves.

Faye, the artist. A determinedly cheerful widow and connoisseur of control-top pantyhose, she’s struggling with creative block and an empty, lonely house. Now she’s got a tricky problem to bring to the club’s table: how can they catch her perfect son-in-law cheating on her only daughter Laura?

Shirley, the healer. Though her yoga-slender body belie her years, decades of dating losers and the strain of being broke make her feel her age. Shirley has a secret dream: a wellness spa that nurtures body and soul. But first she needs to believe in herself, in her abilities, and in her friends at the club.

Marilyn, the brain. A paleontologist who has spent so many years looking at dried-up fossils, she’s almost become one herself. Worried that her brilliant but nerdy son is about to marry the very wrong woman, she gets some help from the HFC, who transform her from a caterpillar to a butterfly, with amazing results.

Alice, the executive. Black and regal, she soared to the top of the corporate ladder. Now her shoes are murder on her arthritic back and the younger jackals are circling in for the kill. But as the inspiration behind the HFC, she’s about to discover something extraordinary: contentment.

For Faye, Shirley, Marilyn, and Alice, the time has come to use it or lose it—be it their bodies, their brains, their spirits, and their sense of fun. Together they realize that they can have it all, perhaps for the first time in their lives. And though what sags may never rise again, feeling sexy has no expiration date— and best of all, with a little help from her friends, a woman can always start over . . . and never, ever, give up what matters most.

This book started out slow for me and about 100 pages in I actually didn't want to finish. But in then end I was glad I did. The second half of the booked really picked up and actually connected me to the characters and I am looking forward to reading the next in the series, The Hot Flash Club Strikes Again. I think my problem in the beginning was that there were too many story lines and with new characters I was having trouble keeping them straight. However, by the mid-point of the book I had put all the pieces together and the book flowed a lot better.

I love how these women meet and form friendships and scheme to help each other with their various problems. It was also refreshing to read about women in their 50s and 60s talking frankly about men, sex, children careers and their feelings about younger women.

It wasn't a great book but it was a good book. A solid beach read for sure. And I think maybe a better option for older women who need a good laugh.

On a personal note I absolutely loved parts of this book because it was set in Boston, where I lived for the past five years. They hold their weekly meetings at Legal Seafoods, which is a great restaurant where I waited tables. They walk down Huntington Ave. where I lived. Every time one of the characters mentioned something uniquely Boston I got a little more attached to the book.

Up Next: F is for Fugitive

This book counts toward my Library Challenge and First in a Series


Dar said...

Yikes, it's kind of scary when a book takes a 100 pages to get into it especially when it's sitting on one's shelf waiting to be read. lol. Glad you enjoyed and related to it being set in Boston. I always think it adds a lot to a book when you can relate the places they're talking about.

Liviania said...

I can't really take books that take 100 pages to get going anymore.

You might like the First Wives' Club better. It's awesome.

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