Written By: Sarah Pekkanen
Published By: Washington Square Press April 9, 2013
Length: 352 pages
In this fourth book by Sarah Pekkanen she continues to write about people and relationships that many women either have been in or relate to. Sarah’s knack for looking inside the thoughts and actions of people is a gift. I was thrilled to receive an early copy of The Best of Us because I knew I’d be wowed!
A group of former college friends and their spouses are invited to a gorgeous island getaway and celebration for one of their friends, Dwight. Dwight has been very successful in business and his wife,Pauline,plans this all inclusive and amazing trip. Each of these individuals brings their own baggage, and I’m not talking luggage, to Jamaica. Tina, Allie and Savannah all went to school with Dwight, now married and all about 35 they’ve come a long way since college.
Tina and Allie are still very close friends, both moms, but Tina seems to be always in a state of demand, kids, husband all of it. Allie has just learned some disturbing news about her birth father, and she has to make choices she’s very unsure about. Savannah and her husband have recently suffered and marital shake up and she shows up for the trip alone, and being flirty with every male around, and sometimes not appropriately. And dear Pauline appears to have it all, but her own insecurities and hidden family secrets prevent her from letting go and enjoying life. All these emotions are flowing over in Jamaica, and to add to the tension, a hurricane is brewing in the Atlantic..heading their way.
These characters are so familiar to me, I feel like I’ve known them all at one time or another. I’ve even been very similar to Tina at many times. Many women home with small children can relate to the image of being pulled in every direction, cooking, cleaning, wiping bottoms, laundry, errands, repeat…oh and don’t forget your husband still loves you and wants to have sex occasionally. It’s a LOT to get your hands around. Just reading about the support of these friends was comforting and made me smile. Oh and I forgot to add that there are some very steamy sex scenes in this book. Sarah clearly knows how to write sex…ha ha.
A male friend like Dwight was a comfort in college, non threatening and someone who would listen and offer a guy point of view. It’s obvious that Tina, Allie and Savannah all still admire Dwight and his friendship. Gio and Ryan, husbands to Tina and Allie like Dwight too, but the reader feels a bit of jealousy building between Gio and Dwight. Could it be the financial success he’s had?
Once again Sarah Pekkanen has shared with us a book of real people, real issues and honest tragedies and solutions. I read this book with a smile and introspection. I wanted a friend to fly me to a Jamaican Villa, hire a private chef and staff and let me just enjoy that life for a week. I also thought of my own life, happy but always crazy busy and in flux…two in college, a high school teen, and my aging mom far away.
I’ve given this book a 5 out of 5 stars and I highly recommend it for an entertaining read!!