All You Could Ask For, by Mike Greenberg.
What makes life worth living is not anything that might happen. It is what is happening right now. - from All You Could Ask For -
Brooke is living the "perfect" life. She has twins and an amazing husband who loves her. She works hard to keep her marriage exciting -- including hiring a photographer to take nude photos of her for her husband's birthday.
Samantha, married only two days, breaks into her new husband's computer and discovers he has been and still is unfaithful to her. She immediately decides to stay in Hawaii (where they have flown for their honeymoon) and train for a triathlon.
Katherine is wealthy and successful in her work -- but she clings to a hatred and resentment for her boss who used to be her lover and who threw her over for another woman almost 20 years ago. When she travels to Aspen for her first vacation in years, the last thing she expects is to meet the man of her dreams.
All three women who grace the pages of Mike Greenberg's debut novel are different, and yet they will soon discover they have something in common. Something which will unexpectedly unite them, cause them to look deeply into their lives, and ultimately define what is most important to them.
There has been a lot of buzz about All You Could Ask For. First of all, the novel is penned by a man who fully embraces his female side in creating characters women will like, if not relate to. Secondly, Mike Greenberg is the voice of ESPN 's Mike in the Morning and has promised to donate all of his profits from the book to The V Foundation for Cancer Research to combat breast cancer.
The book is divided into two parts. In the first part, Greenberg introduces his characters through alternating first person narratives. The second part is dedicated to how these three women come together, and Greenberg makes his novel modern by including social media as the uniting mechanism. This resonated with me, a blogger who has made a lot of friends through my blog, on-line community events and book clubs, and Facebook. It is the second part of the book which really hooked me.
Greenberg writes from a women's perspective very well, although I will admit that I did not relate to all the characters. My least favorite character was Brooke who seemed almost a caricature of the perfect wife and mother. I longed for her to see herself as an individual, rather than an extension of her spouse. Samantha was the most likeable -- she is the person every woman wants for a friend: loyal, giving, sincere. But my favorite character was Katherine, who demonstrates a sarcastic wit and an inner strength I admired. Katherine is the character who grows the most from beginning to end. I wanted Katherine to realize all her goals and find love again.
Nobody is living better than I am; I have a duplex on Park Avenue, a driver, a chef, an assistant, and a killer house in South Hampton, and I did it all on my own. But I still haven't gotten past what happened with Phillip and I doubt I ever will, and I wish to god he was ten times more miserable than I am. If that sounds bitchy, I guess I don't really care. - from All You Can Ask For -
All You Could Ask For is fun women's fiction, but it also has a deeper message about the decisions we make and how we determine our journey through life. Greenberg explores friendship within the context of the unexpected events which life throws in our path. Funny, poignant, and well-crafted, this is a novel which will appeal to a wide variety of women and the men who love them.
★ ★ ★ 1/2
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Mike Greenberg is cohost of ESPN's Mike & Mike in the Morning and the author of two previous New York Times bestsellers. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and a native of New York City. He lives with his wife, Stacy, and their two children in Connecticut. In conjunction with the release of this book, Mike and Stacy have created a foundation called Heidi's Angels, through which all of the author's profits from the sale of this book will be donated to The V Foundation for Cancer Research to combat breast cancer.
Learn more about All You Could Ask For by visiting the book page.
Follow Greenberg on Twitter.
FTC Disclosure: Many thanks to TLC Book Tours and William Morrow for providing me this book for review on my blog.
Catch all of Wendy Robard's reviews in her fabulous blog, "Caribousmom".