Lisi Harrison comes to the blog today with her new woman’s fiction title that uses a book club as the gathering point for friendship, growth and self-determination. Please read on for my review of
The Dirty Book Club
Told in 3rd person past, this tale focuses on the lives of the women in the DBC, a group that has been together some forty odd years, and has used the member’s unwillingness and struggles with society’s expectations of what they should be, as they work toward the women they want to be. Few rules are set in stone, but they are all expected to trust one another on their journey to inner peace and love, and that means maintaining friendships and coping with difficulties. Of course, they must be open-minded and willing to let go of the conventional and accepted norms for behavior, allowing their true selves to shine. And what a shine this is!
I’ll admit, the story was a bit slow to start for me: we meet MJ who has just been passed over for a promotion that she wanted and was more than able to handle. She’s frustrated and hurt, and decides that now is the time to move with her boyfriend to California from the East, and take the time to decide what she really wants from life. Early on, she meets a neighbor, Gloria, and the two appear to hit it off. And then, a mysterious invitation to join the DBC arrives, and MJ decides to ‘see’ what it is all about. Here, the story took flight and added some mention (although little traditional discussion) of titles like Fear of Flying, Fifty Shades of Grey, and How to Make Love Like a Porn Star: none particularly shameful if one is a voracious reader, but still eyebrow raising in some circles. But far from discussing books, these women are sharing their lives, their struggles and good times, all on the way to redefining their lives and expectations, and finding that simple balance.
Each of the four women in the DBC are at different places in their lives, and as we get to know them, we start to see the reasons they were brought together, and just how much the friendships: open, honest and supportive, can serve to enhance all parts of their lives. While mostly focused on Gloria and MJ’s story, the friendships, the history of the club and how it helped and enhanced the lives of all who participated in the DBC. Heartfelt and wonderfully complex, the concepts of supportive friendships enhancing all aspects of your life, and finding the people who are vastly different coming together in a singular purpose of support and openness is a wonderfully strong message throughout.
Title: The Dirty Book Club
Author: Lisi Harrison
Genre: Contemporary Woman's Fiction
Published by: Gallery Books
Published on: 10 October, 2017
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Audio Length: 8 Hours: 12 minutes
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦ Google ♦Audible
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Clique series comes a novel about the importance of friendship, and, of course, the pleasure of a dirty book.
M.J. Stark’s life is picture-perfect—she has her dream job as a magazine editor, a sexy doctor boyfriend, and a glamorous life in New York City. But behind her success, there is a debilitating sense of loneliness. So when her boss betrays her and her boyfriend offers her a completely new life in California, she trades her cashmere for caftans and gives it a try. Once there, M.J. is left to fend for herself in a small beach town, with only the company of her elderly neighbor, Gloria, and an ocean that won’t shut up.
One afternoon, M.J. discovers that Gloria has suddenly moved to Paris with her friends to honor a fifty-year-old pact. And in lieu of a goodbye, she’s left a mysterious invitation to a secret club—one that only reads erotic books. Curious, M.J. accepts and meets the three other hand-selected club members. As they bond over naughty bestsellers and the shocking letters they inherited from the original club members, the four strangers start to divulge the intimate details of their own lives… and as they open up, they learn that friendship might just be the key to rewriting their own stories: all they needed was to find each other first.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: