Review: Catching Air

May 8, 2014 book review, Catching Air, Penguin, Sarah Pekkanen 5

Written By:  Sarah Pekkanen

Published By: Washington Square Press, and imprint of Penguin, May 6, 2014

Length:  352 pages

Source:  E galley via Edelweiss from Publisher.

Summary:  From the internationally bestselling author of four books, including The Opposite of Me, a vibrant, compulsively readable novel about two married couples who pursue a dream to open a bed-and-breakfast in small-town Vermont.

In her previous works including The Best of Us, “rising star” (Library Journal) Sarah Pekkanen captivated readers by penning “refreshingly introspective, sharply realistic, and tenderly humorous” novels (Booklist) that had readers “flying through the pages” (Hoda Kotb, Today show). Now, in Catching Air, Pekkanen turns an unflinching eye on the tangled relationships of two pairs of thirty-somethings.

A chance to run a B&B in snowy, remote Vermont—it’s an offer Kira Danner can’t resist after six soul-crushing years of working as a lawyer in Florida. As Kira and her husband, Peter, step into a brand new life, she quells her fears about living with the B&B’s co-owners: Peter’s sexy, irresponsible brother Rand, and Rand’s wife, Alyssa…who is essentially a stranger.

For her part, Alyssa sees taking over the B&B as the latest in a string of adventures. Plus, a quiet place might help her recover from the news that she can’t bear children. But the idyllic town proves to be anything but serene: Within weeks, the sisters-in-law are scrambling to prepare for their first big booking—a winter wedding—and soon a shy, mysterious woman comes to work for them. Dawn Zukoski is hiding something; that much is clear. But what the sisters-in-law don’t realize is that Dawn is also hiding from someone…

Relatable and dynamic, Catching Air delves deeply into the vital relationships that give shape to women’s lives.(Goodreads)

My Thoughts:   As two couples come together on a new adventure we see exactly how different two brothers can be.  Peter and Rand have completely different approaches to live and career.  Peter and his wife Kira have been steadily working hard, she a lawyer, he running his small computer company.  Rand has had various jobs, none for too long and he and his wife Alyssa have spent more time traveling and having fun.  In a positive turn of events their individual talents seem to meld well into running the B&B.  Kira happily leaves the money hungry law firm and finds her culinary gift.  Alyssa has plans to turn her photography into something additional for their guests.  Rand is a handyman and Peter picks up marketing and other tasks.  

The ups and downs of the B&B are nothing compared to the personal challenges that Rand and Alyssa face starting a family.  Adoption is just one piece of this puzzle.  

When Dawn runs from an awful mistake and a fraud of a boyfriend, she stumbles into Alyssa at a ski lodge and makes fast friends with the four owners.  She’s hiding something big, telling small pieces of her secret to Peter little by little, causing Kira to be suspicious.  

Hosting a “Bridezilla”  style wedding turns into a challenge, weather, bad luck and many other things go wrong.  It’s humorous at times but frustrating for all.  When all these tensions reach a head….who falls apart first?

I adore Sarah Pekkanen, and each and every book she has written.  I honestly believe this may be her best yet.  My thoughts hardly do it justice.  The characters are flawed and unsure of themselves and so honest.  Sarah details the B&B so well, I want to escape there myself, and eat some of that wonderful food.  I wonder if Sarah cooks this way?  

This is a must read, comforting, just enough mystery and edge, and a wonderful way to spend your time.  Pick up a copy everywhere books are sold and enjoy! 

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