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Ratings and Book Reviews (3 13 star ratings
3 reviews
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3.5 out of 5
13
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    Fantastic premise!

    I really enjoyed this story. I found that this book grabbed my interest right from the start and was a rather solid read until the very end. I found that I wanted the best for these three women and hoped that the choices that they were making would work out for them. I wondered what I would do if I were thrust into the same situation that they were presented with and still haven't decided on an answer. Jesse, Claire, and Gabriela have been best friends for years and have always celebrated their birthdays together. The celebration for their fortieth birthday was one of the more memorable parties since it ended with Jesse going into labor with her son, Lucas. Fast forward ten years and the trio is celebrating their fiftieth in Las Vegas where they are given the chance to go back and relive the year they turned forty. I loved the concept behind this story. Who doesn't have things in their past that they would love to go back and change? I know I could compile a rather long list of things I wish I had done differently without a problem. These three ladies all of have major things that they want to change. Jesse wants to save her marriage, which fell apart after the birth of her son. Gabriela wants to have a baby. Claire wants to save her mother who died from cancer that year. The changes that they are making create such an impact that other unexpected changes start occurring and they have no idea how to handle everything. I liked these three characters. They were all flawed and made some pretty big mistakes in their lives. I found Jesse and Claire to be my favorites of the group. Gabriela was so focused on her single goal of having a baby that she pushed everything else aside. Jesse wasn't able to change the biggest obstacle to saving her marriage but she could change how she handled things. I wasn't always happy with the choices she was making but I understood why she made them. Claire had a lot to deal with and I understood her desperation to save her mother and improve her relationship with her daughter. This was my first experience listening to Lisa Larsen's narration but I think she was a great choice for this story. She was able to capture these three characters along with all of the emotions that they were experiencing. I found her voice to be very pleasant and I had no problems listening to her for hours at a time. I would recommend this book to others. I thought that this was a thought-provoking story of three friends trying to repair some of the mistakes in their lives. There were no easy fixes in this story and all of the changes they accomplished took a lot of hard work. I wouldn't hesitate to read more from this talented writing pair in the future. I received a digital review copy of this book from Atria Books via NetGalley and borrowed a copy of the audiobook from my local library via Hoopla.
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    Interesting concept!

    The Year We Turned Forty by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke is a novel about three women who get a chance to relieve the year they turned forty. Claire, Jessica, and Gabriella are getting ready to turn fifty and have gone to Vegas to celebrate. They meet the celebrity magician, Blair Wainright who gives them a wonderful opportunity. He offers to let the three of them go back exactly ten years and relieve that year again. The three of them have to agree on the choice (it is all for one and one for all). At the end of the year they have to decide to stay there or go back to the future (I couldn’t resist). There are some conditions (of course). Can they make the right choices this time? Join Claire, Jessica, and Gabriella on their journey. Is it possible to change the past to improve your future? The Year We Turned Forty started out pretty good, but then it started slowing down. It got bogged down in should I or shouldn’t I thoughts and discussions (they went on for pages). I found Gabriella to be the most annoying (though it was hard to like any of the characters). The one thing I liked in the book was the Gilmore Girls reference. The Year We Turned Forty had an interesting concept. What would you do if you could change your life? Would you really be able to change it? Sometimes you can try too hard. I give The Year We Turned Forty 3 out of 5 stars. It was an adequate book (it could have been more). I was hoping for something unpredictable or different instead of cliché. I received a complimentary copy of The Year We Turned Forty from NetGalley (and the publisher) in exchange for an honest evaluation of the novel.
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    Clever and highly entertaining

    Favorite Quotes: “Together but not connected – a very precarious place for any marriage to perch.” “She realized too late that falling in love was the simple part- it was staying in love that seemed to elude most people.” “Jessie had been like a lone piece of luggage on a baggage carousel, endlessly circling around, with no hope of being recovered.” “Claire had never been one to work out. Her idea of breaking a sweat was having a heated negotiation with another Realtor.” My Review: The Year We Turned Forty was an exceptionally written, creative, interesting, and highly entertaining read. This was my first experience with either author but will now be tracking them both in the same manner I following sales announcements for my favorite boutique. The writing was superb, painfully insightful, thoughtful, observant, clever, and all engrossing. Once I started, I could not put my kindle down and resented all interruptions to my reading. The characters were fully inhabited and endearing, yet frustrating and deeply flawed – well - aren’t we all? The storyline presented an interesting premise; I liked thinking of what I would do if offered the same 10 year do-over…
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