Monday, June 2, 2014

Your Perfect Life by Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke

Your Perfect Life
by Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke

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Release date: June 10, 2014
Publisher: A Washington Square Press/Atria Paperback Original
ISBN: 978-1-47673-057-8
Genre: Chick-lit
Paperback: 304 pages
Rating: 4.5

Just in time for summer, lifelong friends and co-authors Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke offer readers YOUR PERFECT LIFE (Washington Square Press/Atria; June 10, 2014; trade paperback original), a clever, honest, and touching debut novel about friendship, jealousy, and unexpected second chances. Fenton, a working mom with a demanding job and two school-age kids, and Steinke, who left a successful career as a television producer to move halfway across the country for love, a newborn baby, and domestic life in a small town, wrote this charming and hilarious story together from their disparate locations. Blending their on-the-page voices perfectly in the narrative, the authors explore the journeys of two women—characters whose lives have many similarities to their own.

Casey Lee is a single, 38-year-old career-driven Gossip TV co-anchor who seemingly has it all, including a penthouse in the chic Wilshire area of Los Angeles and an Emmy award on the shelf. Casey’s best friend, Rachel Cole, is a dedicated stay-at-home mother married to her high school sweetheart, John, and together they have a house in Culver City, a minivan, and three children—two teenage girls Audrey and Sophia, and a baby girl named Charlotte.

In alternating voices and chapters, Casey and Rachel share their perspectives in the novel. The two friends have known each other since the 7th grade and, as the book begins, they’re headed for their 20-year high school reunion. Attending the event with mixed emotions, the women reflect on their lives as not all they’d imagined when they were young girls with a shared love of the Sweet Valley High series. Casey has realized most of her dreams professionally but still hasn’t settled down with that special someone to start a family. Rachel was voted most likely to succeed in high school but sacrificed a career in broadcasting when she found herself pregnant upon college graduation. After an unparalleled argument reveals the deep-seeded resentment they’d never before shared openly, Casey and Rachel ply themselves with drinks, including a magical elixir whipped up courtesy of a handsome and mysterious bartender who proposes a fortuitous toast: “To your perfect life.”

The next morning, the women wake up to discover they’ve switched identities and must masquerade as each other. Rachel is forced to face the broadcasting dreams she forfeited to have a family, and Casey finally steps out of the spotlight to confront the real reason why she’s never committed to a relationship with a man. As a result, they realize they don’t know themselves—or their best friend—nearly as well as they thought they did.

From the hip boutiques on Robertson Avenue to tucked-away Italian eateries on Santa Barbara’s State Street, with Culver City, Santa Monica, Malibu, Laguna Beach, and everywhere in between, the novel’s references to familiar geographical locales—and celebrities—as the story unfolds will delight Angelinos everywhere. And readers of all kinds will relate to and cheer for the two enduring friends as they confront the oft-used idiom that The Grass is Always Greener…

Like Rachel and Casey, co-authors Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke discovered just how much they didn’t know about each other (while writing the book), despite the fact they’d been best friends for over two decades. And like their characters, their friendship is much stronger for the experiences they shared. Liz and Lisa hope readers of YOUR PERFECT LIFE will be reminded why friendships are so important and be inspired to pick up the phone and call their best friend.


About the Authors:

Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke have been best friends for 25 years and survived junior high, high school and college together. Liz lives in San Diego, CA with her husband and two children. Lisa, a former talk show producer, now lives in Chicago, IL with her husband, daughter and two bonus children. Your Perfect Life is their first novel.

My two-bits:

Fun Freaky Friday moment which lasts longer than a day.

I liked this fuzzy feel good chick-lit read. Had a blast stepping into the lives of a celebrity talk show host and stay-at-home mom in a state of switcheroo with moments of friendship bonding and light romance.

The character development and growth progresses well for both main characters.

This book also gets you thinking of analyzing your life by stepping out of your shoes and viewing it from a different perspective. Being we all can't have the body switch phenomena, a vacation from your life's normal routine might give a similar effect.

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--~ Book Giveaway ~--

signup to win this book at Goodreads here
-expires June 10, 2014

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* review copy courtesy of book tour sponsored by Simon & Schuster.

* part of Bookish Bingo challenge

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