Title: I’ll Take What She Has
Author: Samantha Wilde. She is the author of a previous novel, This Little Mommy Stayed Home.
Genre: Chick Lit
Summary: Nora and Annie have been best friends since kindergarten. Nora, a shy English teacher at a quaint New England boarding school, longs to have a baby. Annie, an outspoken stay-at-home mother of two, longs for one day of peace and quiet (not to mention more money and some free time). Despite their very different lives, nothing can come between them—until Cynthia Cypress arrives on campus.
Cynthia has it all: brains, beauty, impeccable style, and a gorgeous husband (who happens to be Nora’s ex). When Cynthia eagerly befriends Nora, Annie’s oldest friendship is tested. Now, each woman must wrestle the green-eyed demon of envy and, in the process, confront imperfect, mixed-up family histories they don’t want to repeat. Amid the hilarious and harried straits of friendship, marriage, and parenthood, the women may discover that the greenest grass is right beneath their feet.
This book started out really strong for me – however as it progressed, it became both predictable and a bit shallow. I felt like the characters were a little bit too perfect despite their flaws. I did like how it was told in alternating chapters; however a font change would have been helpful for me to keep track of whose chapter I was reading. I was also hoping that Wilde would give Cynthia more of a voice instead of what we see of her through Nora and Annie. A few chapters sprinkled in with her point of view would have been nice. This was a good read if you’re looking for something quick, but it did have that air of white picket fences for me. For me it was just a little too perfect and predictable.
Gina aka Slappy Bio
I really enjoyed this book and viewed it as a “light read”, something that I could pick up every once in a while without being too heavily vested in it. I found the characters believable, but some of it swerved into whining territory and as the mother of teenagers, who hears whining on a regular basis and doesn’t want to read about it too, I found that a little annoying.
I related to the two main characters feeling like other people’s lives were somehow better than theirs. I think that to some degree all women feel this. We tend to play the “nobody’s life is as busy, sad, scary, etc. as mine” game and it really serves no purpose other than to make us feel bad.
I took from this book a valuable lesson; that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
Sometimes it’s nice to have a little chick lit in your life to help balance out the chaos. I was looking for that bit of balance and was in the mood for some light reading. Because of that, this book spoke to me. It spoke to the anxious perfectionist, the am-I-doing-enough mother, the people-pleaser and the selfish inner child. I enjoyed learning about the two main characters and their very different personalities and approaches to life. I admired them both for different reasons and also felt like I related to both on different levels. It was happy, sad, funny and frustrating.
Sure, the ending is a little neat, but I found myself wanting it to be that way. I was really pulling for both of these two women to get what they wanted out of their struggles.
In short, I loved it and I hope you do too.
This book can be a little predictable, but still worth the read if you’re into it. It’s an interesting read, especially if the reader enjoys the workings of female relationships (if not, well, you may want to find a different book). To be honest, I just wanted to find out what the deal was with the new teacher. The characters were like-able in some ways, but definitely human, just a little insecure for my taste. It’s a safe before-bedtime read, for sure. No risk of nightmares, and it is not too hard to set down if needed. Overall, light fiction that’s easy to follow. It may not be my absolute favorite, but it did entertain, and I’ll probably read it again.
Skip if you dislike chick lit of any kind. Or whining. That’s probably my biggest complaint. Read if you enjoy chick lit and have a free weekend. It’s a pretty quick book, especially if you have a few hours to kill.