Monday, June 9, 2014

Your Perfect Life

Your Perfect Life
Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke

Published June 10th 2014

First Sentence
"My mouth tastes like ass."

Publisher's Description:

With “a delicious, page-turning premise, and sweet and surprising insights” (New York Times bestselling author Jen Lancaster), Your Perfect Life perfectly illustrates that old adage: Sometimes, you to have to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes to see what’s in her heart.

Best friends since childhood, Casey and Rachel couldn’t lead more different lives. While workaholic Casey rubs elbows with celebrities daily as the host of Gossip TV and comes home nightly to an empty apartment, stay-at-home mom Rachel juggles an “oops” baby, two fiery teenagers, and a husband who barely seems the man she fell in love with two decades before. After an argument at their twentieth high school reunion, Casey and Rachel throw back shots to get the night back on track. Instead, they get a life-changing hangover.

Waking up in each other’s bodies the next morning, they must figure out how to navigate their altered realities. Rachel is forced to confront the reason she gave up her broadcasting dreams when she got pregnant in college, and Casey finally steps out of the spotlight to face the truth about why she’s alone. And they soon discover that they don’t know themselves—or their best friend—nearly as well as they thought they did.

Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke bring humor and heart to every page of this novel that is sure to please fans of In Her Shoes and The Opposite of Me. Your Perfect Life is a story about two very different women, what they didn't know about each other, and how, by switching lives, they each learn to appreciate their own.

Dear Reader,

How cute is this book? I was a little apprehensive (I'm not the romance or chick lit type of reader) and feared this would be the type of book made into a Lifetime movie... I was wrong. If this is made into a movie, they better steer clear of Lifetime! Your Perfect Life follows that old "switch-a-roo" plot line but these ladies do it right. One woman, Rachel, is a stay at home mom with three kids, the other woman, Casey, is trying to climb the ladder of journalism using her starring role as a TV Host for GossipTV. I found Casey's storyline very intriguing, but maybe that was because I'm not married with kids. I wonder if the Authors intended this to be the case, so that most readers can relate to one or the other.

When they (Rachel & Casey) attend their High School Reunion, they find each other struggling to find common ground with one another, hardly finding enough time for their friendship nor recognizing the hard work the other goes through. Some unexplained magical bartender sees this interaction and decides to magically switch their lives, giving them the opportunity to see what life is like in the others shoes. Liz & Lisa, the Authors, have a great collaboration here. I love that these two came together and wrote this book, giving it uber charm. I liked all the little details they've thought of, for example: After the switch, the only person who might have an inkling that this has happened is Rachel's toddler who gives slight clues to the reader that the child is in-tune with the switch.

This book made me think about my own relationships with my High School friends, and how we've grown apart but still keep in touch. I do think circumstances such as having kids, focusing on a career, traveling, can put a distance on a relationship. If we look at what High School means, everyone having that same life experience, you'll see we select our friends based on common interests. Those interests might not go away but as we grow-up our priorities DO change. We begin to think more about our day to day life, spend more time with the families we've created and those common interests tend to sit by the wayside. What I love about this book is how it got me to think about that, how it makes you think about what it would be like to be in someone elses shoes. If I had kids, lived a different life... would I be too busy, what about a mother who doesn't work 8 hours a day, would she feel just as exhausted? Sometimes changing things up breathes new life into things. I think everyone needs to have a refreshing look on their own lives every now and then, and wouldn't it be nice to be forced into appreciating your life like these two were.

Okay, so maybe a magical bartender isn't going to switch things up for me... but I can do that on my own, and reading Your Perfect Life has reminded me that I SHOULD be doing just that. I should stop complaining that I don't have enough energy to call everyone back, to go out during the work week. I need to realize what is important in life and worth my energy. My friends are definitely worth that.. so thank you Liz & Lisa, for getting me to realize that. So yes, this is a book that follows a cliche, one that has been rehashed a million times over... but that one makes you think, brings some insight... and that is what I think makes this book shine.

Happy Reading,

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