Did I ever tell you about the time I harpooned my book club? I mean, I might be overstating my own influence, but I still feel bad about it disintegrating soon after I quit. (Or maybe it didn’t. Maybe they have continued to meet but just never told me about it! That’s probably it. That’s what I’ll believe from now on.)
But, I miss it. I miss the conversations (we did talk about the books) and I miss learning the various perspectives my friends brought to and from the books. But I hadn’t missed it enough to start thinking about diving back into book club again—until now.
Recently, courtesy of NetGalley, I read an advanced copy of A Window Opens by Elisabeth Egan (real-life book editor at Glamour magazine). Alice Pearse isn’t leaning in, she’s sitting right on the fence between her part-time job reviewing books at a magazine and watching her kids walk home from the elementary school she can see from her front porch. When her lawyer husband decides to start his own practice, she takes a leap into full-time breadwinner status at the hip new literary start-up “Scroll”.
Soon, however, leaning in starts to feel like falling over. How does she tell her best friend–owner of the local independent bookstore–that she’s helping develop deluxe reading lounges for all those e-readers fans in the world? What does she do when she notices her husband drinking more and more? How can she balance full-time work commitments and staying in touch with her three growing kids? Then–when her father gets sick–how can she figure out what really matters anyway?
Funny, thought-provoking and heart wrenching, I can’t wait for this book to come out so I can start forcing it upon my friends. Working or not, mother or not, I think many of my friends can relate to something in this story. As a newer working mom, this book really spoke to me about the doubt. The guilt. The illusion of balance. At the same time, it didn’t preach. It explored a complex issue in a complex character’s life and we are lucky enough to go along for the ride.
A Window Opens will be published August 25, 2015. I’m planning the book discussion for Sunday, October 4 at a quaint little Irish pub nearby. Who’s with me?