There’s nothing quite like getting a book in the post from an old friend, with a handwritten note, especially when you’re like me, and live on the other side of the world. I am also very lucky to have friends who have excellent taste in books!
This book is about Alice, a 29 year old woman pregant with her first child, who wakes up, disorientated, in a crowded gym class. With horror, Alice soon realises that she’s not 28, she’s almost 40, she has three children, a gym membership, and her beloved husband is divorcing her: she’s lost the last ten years of her memory!
As Alice peices the story of the last ten years back together, we are joined by her sister, Elizabeth, who is seeing a counsellor, and is a bit estranged from Alice, and her “Grandmother” Frannie, who has moved into a retirement villiage and is writing a popular blog.
What quickly becomes apparent to Alice is how capable and intense she has become, and sometimes she’s not sure that she likes this person. She also knows that there’s a lot that her family are not telling her, about the reasons for her divorce, and about someone named Gina.
Often hilariously funny, the book is quite poignant in it’s portrayal of a woman looking into her future. Where we think we will be in life when we’re turning 30 is not necessarily who we will be ten years later, and our relationships both personal and romantic can be changed in ways we can never imagine, for the better or the worst. I think that idea was captured so beautifully. Because of that, the book is quite sad in places, and felt bad for a woman who missed all the good memories of her relationship and her children growing up. It was sad for Alice longing for her husband, who she had been in an excellent relationship with in 1998, and who had so much anger and bitterness towards her in the present, without her knowing why. But it’s not a sad book at all, and I often found myself laughing out loud at it, which doesn’t happen very often.
Read It If: you’ve ever looked back over your life and wondered how you ended up where you are, or where you’re really heading. Excellent.