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  • An interesting read

    Happy Publication Day to Better Luck Next Time! This book is set in 1938 in Reno, Nevada - a state where women could stay for six weeks and obtain a “no questions asked” divorce which was quite unusual in the day. This book describes the relationships formed at the Flying Leap Dude Ranch which hosted many wealthy women who fled to Reno in order to dissolve their marriages. Told from the perspective of a retired physician, Ward reflects about his time working at the ranch at the age of 24. He particularly recalls two women Nina, a St. Louis heiress and amateur pilot at the ranch to obtain her third divorce, and Emily whose most courageous act to date was to drive herself to the ranch from San Francisco. These two women share a suite at the ranch and they develop a special bond. Not only do their personalities complement one another, but they bring out the best in one another as well. The story also demonstrates the difference in social class, aspirations and gender in 1938 - some of which have not improved much over the past eighty years. While the book was entertaining, I did not feel connected to these characters. Moreover, I felt the book lacked emotion which was not only disappointing, but a must for me to enjoy a book. Having said that, the stories and antics from the ranch were amusing - just not often enough to keep me fully engaged. I enjoyed the bit of romance in the story, which provided insight into the personalities, and differences, of the characters involved. I recommend this book to those that enjoy literary fiction. I listened to the audiobook version of the book which was narrated by David Aaron Baker who had a good performance. Reminiscent of listening to a cowboy telling stories of his past, I appreciated this quality which brought some authenticity to the book. I listened to the book at my usual 1.25x speed which was perfect for me. I would not hesitate to recommend the audiobook version of the book to those that enjoy this format. Thanks to Netgalley and Harper audio for the ARC of this audiobook in exchange for the honest review provided here.

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