I enjoy reading in my spare time….not that I have much spare time! I often find myself forgetting the books I have read, or knowing that I read it but don’t really remember what it was about. Since I have this lovely blog, I deicded that I could use this as a forum to keep track of the books that I read. This will be my first “Book Review” post.
Title: Certain Girls
Author: Jennifer Weiner
Copyright Date: 2008 – Hardcover, 386pages
Publisher: Atria Books
Brief Character List: Candace Cannie Shapiro, “diet doctor” husband Peter Krushelevansky, Cannie’s teenaged daughter Joy, Joy’s biological father Bruce Guberman
Summary in my words: Cannie Shapiro wrote a sex filled angry novel when she was 28. It was based on her life experiences of having a rotten father who left them, an unexpected pregnancy, a lesbian mother and more. She kept it hidden from her soon to be 13 year old daughter, Joy. Joy was born prematurely which caused a hearing problem for which she wears hearing aids to correct. Joy is your typical angry teen. She spends a good chunk of the book doing “research” about her mother’s past. She is trying to find the “truth” about her birth and her mother’s feelings about it. Joy’s birth father, Bruce, left the picture for a bunch of years from before Joy was born until she was a few years old. He is currently in her life on a part time basis. Peter is the one who raised her and whom she calls “dad”. The book spends a lot of time dealing with their Jewish heritage and Joy’s participation in other bar/bat mitzvahs and preparing for her own. Some of this seemed tedious to me as I am not Jewish and could not relate to that part. After a few mishaps and a sudden death, Joy and Cannie come to terms with each other. They close the book in the hospital room where they are receiving a new baby boy who they name Charlie. He is the product of a surrogate insemination that Peter asked Cannie for in the beginning of the book.
What I Thought: The review I read of this book commented on the fact that it might be hard to get into it without having read the first book, Good in Bed. I did not find that to be true of this book. This was my first read in awhile and I must say I enjoyed it. The relationship with Cannie and Joy was so relatable. I never saw the twist of a sudden death coming though. Although I do feel that helped to bring the relationship of mother and daughter back on track. We have certainly seen firsthand in our lives how the death of a loved one and bring about great change in the entire family dynamic.
Other books by Jennifer Weiner: Good in Bed, In Her Shoes, Little Earthquakes, Goodnight Nobody, The Guy Not Taken, Best Friends Forever