Book Review: Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake by Anna Quindlen

May 23, 2012 book review 4

Anna Quindlen is the author of five novels and seven non-fiction books, along with two children’s books.  She has written for numerous magazines and newspapers, most notably The New York Times for 17 years.  She created a column entitled Life in the 30’s that ran for 13 of those years.  Anna was  instrumental in bringing World Book Night to America this year. How can one woman be so prolific? Well she has and in this new book she gives us so much more to reflect on.

This is the first non fiction book I’ve read by Anna Quindlen, and to say I now have a girl crush on her is to belittle the love I have for her. 
Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake is written and told in a serious of essays with varying topics, this book is how Anna shares growing up and growing older.  She makes us all realize we are normal for feeling happy we lived, loved and survived and have made it to our 50’s…and going forward with more knowledge and humor can only get better.
Topics include The Stuff we have, Girlfriends, Generations, and more.  Quindlen speaks from the heart.

I found myself reading and really understanding how the years I’ve lived have given me knowledge and power and so much more insight into my life and my thoughts on raising my children. There are too many great quotes from this book to share here, but here is one from the introduction, “Life In The Fifties”
     Many of us have come to a surprising conclusion about this moment in our lives. No, it’s not that there are weird freckly spots on the back of our hands, although there are, or that construction guys don’t make smutty comments as we pass, although they don’t. It’s that we’ve done a pretty good job of becoming ourselves, and that this is, in so many ways, the time of our lives. As Carly Simon once sang, “These are the good old days.” Lots of candles, plenty of cake. I wouldn’t be twenty-five again on a bet, or even forty. And when I say this to a group of women at lunch, everyone around the table nods. Many of us find ourselves exhilarated, galvanized, at the very least older and wiser.

This book is so empowering, thoughts on raising children and aging parents, things I’m all to aware of.
I’ve given this book to my sister and mother, and they’ve loved it!!  I wish I could afford to buy a copy for all my friends as this book is just so positive and lovely to read.
I rated it a 5 out of 5 stars.  Please visit Anna’s website to learn more about her. 

Thank you to Edelweiss and Random House Publishing Group for providing me with an egalley of this book.  This in no way impacted my review.

4 Responses to “Book Review: Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake by Anna Quindlen”

  1. MissKris

    I loved this book too…always been a huge fan of hers. One remark I loved was when she told how her doctor said at our ages our minds are like overflowing file cabinets. We’re not necessarily losing our marbles because we forget things…it’s just that we have so much stored away by the time we get to our ‘golden’ years there’s just more to sort thru to find the answers! 🙂

  2. Zibilee

    I think that Quindlen has a lot to share, and I don’t really think it matters what age you are, this is a book that every woman should read. I am so glad that you had such a great time with this book and that it really spoke to you. I would love to read it at some point!

  3. Jenners

    It seems like she hit a home run with this book. All the reviews I’ve seen of it have been raves like yours. I’ve read most of her fiction books but have been spotty on these types of books. I shall have to give this one a go though … maybe when I turn 50 (which is not all that far away).

  4. Pam

    I have been a fan of Quindlen’s for years. I’m pretty sure I’ve read everything she has written. I’m waiting for this one from my library. Anxiously waiting…

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