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Tuesday, October 02, 2007

My Favorite Mistake

**** My Favorite Mistake by Beth Kendrick. Chick lit.

I was familiar with Beth Kendrick's name from the (sadly, now defunct) Literary Chicks blog, so when I ran across this book in the discount section, I took it as a sign that I should give her a try.

Faith's used to stepping in whenever her little sister needs help, but after she co-signed the mortgage for Skye's bar, she thought she could pursue her own life as a globetrotting culinary writer. So when Skye calls her in Italy, in tears because her second husband has run off with another woman, Faith offers sympathy, but doesn't plan on coming back to Minnesota to hold her hand this time.

Then she gets a call from Flynn, her ex. Skye's not just broken-hearted. She's also pregnant, and the bar (with all of Faith's savings invested in it) is on the verge of bankruptcy. Faith makes the trip. Only to find that she's not a one-half owner of the bar--she's a one-third owner, Flynn being the other partner.

Ten years ago, Flynn had given Faith an ultimatum: marriage or nothing. She picked "nothing" and ran off to Los Angeles with a bass player. They've never talked about it, and now they have to work together to save the bar.

I always enjoy reunion stories, and that was fun, with a nice balance between comedy and romance. They'd both obviously gone on with their lives, but they'd also both never gotten over each other. Their dancing around the subject, trying to avoid the hurt and anger and attraction between them, was realistic and compelling. If it had been a romance, rather than chick lit, I'd have wanted to see more of what they saw in each other. But that's not what the book was about, so I accepted it as given.

It was about.... well, "
if I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with!" pretty much sums it up. Faith's made a life for herself, but she doesn't realize how much she needs home--both the good and the bad of it--until she comes back.

It was the secondary things that bugged me--Skye in particular. She's basically a ditzy bimbo. By the time Faith gets there, she's forgotten about her husband, and is blithely trying to pick up other men. The bar is her livelihood, but she's completely clueless and unconcerned about it, except for coming up with a ridiculous (and potentially dangerous) contest. And Faith enables, practically encourages her irresponsibility.


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