28/12/2013

Festive Book Review: Divine Moves By Ellyn Oaksmith

Another post inspired by the festive season.

Blurb: A colorful grandma, a daughter in denial, an angry granddaughter. Welcome to the family.

With her marriage on the rocks, Meryl thinks life can't get any worse -- until her mother shows up. Faye, a former stripper and born again Christian, plans on opening an exotic dance and fitness studio in Meryl's exclusive lakeside community. If mother and daughter don't kill each other first.

While her kids stage their own rebellion and her husband fights to win her back, Meryl finds comfort in the arms of a handsome sheriff recovering from his own loss.

After her mother ropes Meryl's book club into performing at a charity tea to promote the new studio, Meryl finds she must face her past. But first she has to get through Christmas.

Funny and smart, Divine Moves reveals the forces that derail our lives and the sometimes divine intervention that keeps us on track.

"There are hundreds of people out there. Women in suits and dresses. I can't do this. I cannot get up on stage and dance in front of them, let alone take off my clothes. "

"She's freaking out, what do we do?" Diane asked as Lorraine started breathing in rapid, throaty gasp.

"Slap her!" Sandy said, looking both domineering and adorable in her tuxedo with tails and fishnet stockings.

Carol rushed up, intercepting Sandy by grabbing her wrist before she could administer a blow.

Sandy jerked her hand away, annoyed. "What? It works in the movies."

Oh my, oh my, oh my. My new year might be looking up to better days thanks to Ellyn Oaksmith. And of course, Divine Moves.

Meryl Howe hits rock bottom when she catches her husband cheating with a sleazy neighbour who borrows Meryl's coat as she's being thrown out. Luckily, though it was a hard impact, she still has her legs. So she's seeking to move on. Though it wouldn't be easy with Christmas around the corner. When she's been cut emotionally deep, how can she just hang in there in a season that's all about love? Especially when she has no love, how can she get through Christmas this year? Besides, the stress of always being a good wife is weighing down on her when the bills come and her children home from school with their own dilemma to add to hers?

Fortunately, Faye, mother of Meryl comes into the picture, as the super-heroine. As if she's got the solutions to solve all the problems. How can one hopeless alcoholic (whose been sober for four years) handle her grandchildren when she screwed up the whole shebang as a mother?

The questions are: Will Meryl get through Christmas with her mother in the picture claiming she has the business idea that would save her, Meryl's butt? Will both her children keep out of trouble now that she has less time to supervise thanks to a shitty job at Macy's perfume section selling La Vie Est Belle (love the irony)? Will her husband ever stop pestering her about forgiveness even though he's sharing a house next door with the other trashy woman? Is she safe leaving her children in the care of her mother who's busy filling out loan forms for her "business" idea? And most importantly, will Meryl find love this Christmas and be able to patch up her broken heart?

There are two TV shows I'd stone anyone if they ever disrupt my watching them. One, Grey's Anatomy. Two, Desperate Housewives. This book is so Desperate Housewives with a unique storyline. So it means I got anyone who interrupted my reading stoned. (But, hey, my mum was an exception and Ellyn would have to forgive me since this book is all about mothers)

My Desperate Housewives sweeties, let me take you back down Wisteria Lane. When Lynette had cancer and her mum, Polly Bergen walked in to help. I have pictures:

But take out Lynette of the picture and put in Bree.

I loved Bree! Forget Purple is the New Black, Meryl is the new Bree. I digged how Meryl was emotionally detached always striving to be the good wife. Her perfectionism was insane. I couldn't relate to her more than I'm sure you women would. The silly thing about a gender barrier. But I loved her nonetheless like I loved Bree. Her struggle, her complexity, everything about her was so three-dimensional. And holy cow, it was the first time I didn't need 3D goggles to reach out and feel a character —★

I loved that this was a multiple character read. It was a nice change from most of the first-person narrative you see in women's fiction genre. And besides our lead girl, the characters were amazing. From Jackie the sister whose relationships don't get past moving-in stage because she'd be honest she hasn't gotten into terms with allowing a pet in despite her being singe. Sam, the cop who kept more of his eyes on Meryl and less of on the bad guys—loved the romance this character contributed to the story. Faye, the mother who can work a pole probably less than she can a sandwich—like any true mother. The Women at the book club whose personalities made me crack up, my personal fav. Sandy Chen, who would never ever get any chance to slap someone in life after she let her one chance pass.—★★ Ooh, almost forgot Nathalie, the wild child with a sharp tongue glued with loads of funny, snippy, snide remarks.

You would fall hopelessly for this book because of the humor in it. Unless you are wearing a jaw strap (if such a thing exists), prepare to poop in your pants. —★★★ I am not supposed to reveal to the world I am contemplating on going au naturel, you know what I mean. I could be a chick-lit character and though you might all be judging me now, would feel sympathy for me to know that I got no pants left.

I might be trying to hide it all with a funny review. But I wouldn't do justice to this book if I don't tell you I did shed a few tears. The book came at a moment whern I was battling my own addiction for sometime. It's only yesterday that my cousin, Anita was arguing with me about a thing as a perfect marriage. Thanks to Ellyn Oaksmith, I took the right stance. The perfect marriage, with all the happily- ever-laters all happen because of one secret. The secret of reconciliation. —★★★★ This book teaches so many issues that we all people as men and women going through marriage, addiction, a shitty present resulting from a shitty past can learn.

I just love this book because it just wasn't your typical Santa holiday read. It actually brings in the thought that while you might have your Christmas revolving all around Santa, some just got home from Charity Galas to find their husbands caught in the act and going through one hell of a Christmas, so just be thankful! —★★★★★

I loved, loved Divine Moves and it's available on Amazon.

Trust me I laughed myself to a headache when I caught the only reference to the title. It's all a Divine Intervention, as Carol one of the book club members puts it. Lol.

Hope you love this one. Totally recommending it to anyone who has tried thinking of learning exotic dancing without the greasy fingers shoving down dollar bills in your panties. Anyone who just wants the best imagery of their lives seeing the most unusual characters doing the most unusually interesting things. Anyone who just wants a blast these last few days of 2013.

To be very honest with you, I'm wondering how I can get this review intact on Amazon. It's actually the first time, I'm thinking of bargaining with the morons to copy-paste this review on their fabulous site with the shitty review system. And I am glad my blogging life this year ended on a good note.

My rating might just be a five/five star

Happy Holidays! Till 2014 , Merry Christmas and a happy new year.

I am grateful for all the amazing books of you all fabulous indie authors I took on! Love you all to pieces!

Another post inspired by the festive season.

1 comment:

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