Eve Porter is shattered when she gets the phone call telling her that her physician husband has died of a heart attack while away on a business trip. The friends of her book club rally to support her. Over the course of a year, Eve must move herself and two children in their early teens, from their upscale home to an apartment in the city. She has to deal with the return to work after two decades as an at home mother, and sort out her feelings about her marriage, and how she wants to move on with her life, especially after a relationship develops with her new boss.
Her four long time friends while supportive of Eve are dealing with their own midlife issues. The unifying element is that each woman is examining her most significant relationships. Annie is trying to become pregnant, but finds instead she has a life threatening illness. Her difficulty communicating with her husband leads to a separation. Doris flees to a cabin in Michigan when she finds out about her husband's infidelity. She has to decide what to do about her marriage. Eve is a single independent artist. She is challenged by having her aging mother move in with her, and with an attraction to someone she did not expect. Gabriella's husband gets laid off. She has to negotiate a return to full time work while still taking care of four children and her husband's ego.
Each chapter is prefaced with a quote from the book the women are reading. The author describes the influence the books and discussions have on the women's lives. While their problems do not resolve in ways they might have wanted or expected, this book has an optimistic tone.
This report prepared by Susan Coffey