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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

The Year We Turned Forty

The Year We Turned Forty

ISBN: 9781476763446

Publisher: Atria

Publication Date: 4/26/2016

Format: Paperback

My Rating: 5 Stars

If you could repeat one year of your life, what would you do differently?

This heartwarming and hilarious novel from the authors of The Status of All Things and Your Perfect Life features three best friends who get the chance to return to the year they turned forty—the year that altered all of their lives, in ways big and small—and also get the opportunity to change their future.

Jessie loves her son Lucas more than anything, but it tears her up inside that he was conceived in an affair that ended her marriage to a man she still loves, a man who just told her he's getting remarried. This time around, she’s determined to bury the secret of Lucas’ paternity, and to repair the fissures that sent her wandering the first time.

Gabriela regrets that she wasted her most fertile years in hot pursuit of a publishing career. Yes, she’s one of the biggest authors in the world, but maybe what she really wanted to create was a family. With a chance to do it again, she’s focused on convincing her husband, Colin, to give her the baby she desires.

Claire is the only one who has made peace with her past: her twenty-two year old daughter, Emily, is finally on track after the turmoil of adolescence, and she's recently gotten engaged, with the two carat diamond on her finger to prove it. But if she’s being honest, Claire still fantasizes about her own missed opportunities: a chance to bond with her mother before it was too late, and the possibility of preventing her daughter from years of anguish. Plus, there’s the man who got away—the man who may have been her one true love.

But it doesn’t take long for all three women to learn that re-living a life and making different decisions only leads to new problems and consequences—and that the mistakes they made may, in fact, have been the best choices of all…

My Review

A special thank you to Atria Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Contemporary authors Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke, BFF’s in real life, return following their hit, The Status of All Things,with THE YEAR WE TURNED FORTY —an exploration (wild ride), turning back the clock, for some "time travel" and a little magical fantasy of, “what if.” Mixed with humor, pop-culture, friendship, relationships and chick-lit domestic contemporary drama—a story of three California best friends, Gabriela, Jessie, and Claire. Gabriela, Jessie, and Claire's birthdays fall within a few months of each other—Gabriela in late May, Claire in June, and Jessie in July—and they’d made a vow almost twenty years before, while sipping beers at a dive bar in Newport Beach-- to always celebrate together. Each of the women have their own personal and professional issues. From infidelity, marriage, divorce, fertility, death, children and years spent building career, with motherhood put aside. Regrets, second chances, second guessing decisions, made over the years. Re-thinking their choices and if they had taken different paths, how would their lives be different. The gals head to Vegas to celebrate their 50th birthday-- a chance at a do over, to go back 10 years. One year to change decisions, and hope for a better outcome--the second time around. Excited for a chance to change the course of their lives; however, maybe their decisions were not so bad, after all. Mixed with wit, wisdom, charm, and life’s messiness—The power of female friendship, with Liz and Lisa’s own trademark-special entertaining style.

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Advance Praise

"The Year We Turned Forty manages to be both uniquely magical and deeply real. It is classic Liz and Lisa: charming, fun, thoughtful, and clever; an honest and heartfelt exploration of friendship, love, regret, and redemption." --Taylor Jenkins Reid, author of Maybe in Another Life

“If life came with a do-over button, could you really change your fate? That’s the question three friends must grapple with when they’re given a chance to relive the last decade of their lives. Wildly entertaining and sparkling with wisdom and wit, The Year We Turned Forty is Liz and Lisa at their very best.”--Camille Pagan, bestselling author of Life and Other Near-Death Experiences

"Liz and Lisa have done it again. In The Year We Turned Forty, they remind us that life isn't perfect but to appreciate where we are. Their writing has grown dramatically making this their best book yet." --Andrea Katz, Great Thoughts, Great Readers

Liz and Lisa

About the Authors

Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke have been best friends for over 25 years. They co-created this website in 2009 to celebrate books women love and to have a place to talk shit about reality TV stars. They have three novels with Simon & Schuster/Atria Books. Their debut novel, Your Perfect Life, about two childhood best friends who switch bodies at their twenty-year high school reunion, published on June, 10 2014. Their second book, The Status of All Things, about a woman who realizes she can change the course of her entire life by what she writes in her Facebook status, was published on June 2, 2015. And their third book, The Year We Turned Forty, about three women who get the chance to relive the year they turned forty, a year they each made tough, life changing decisions, on April 26, 2016. But a lot happened before the publishing deal…Read More

The status of all thiings

Your Perfect Life







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