Thursday, September 23, 2010

All We Ever Wanted Was Everything

All We Ever Wanted Was Everything, by Janelle Brown.

Janice often consoles herself with the idea that Margaret will understand, someday when she has a family of her own, how priorities change; how fantasies about career and adventure grow irrelevant the minute you have a baby in your arms who adores you, relies on you, greedily consumes your very essence. How life always isn't what you anticipate it will be like when you're young and idealistic, and the grace comes in learning to love what you have chosen instead. Sometimes, Janice also wonders whether the person she is trying to convince of this is not her daughter but herself.

This is Janelle Brown's (author of This is Where We Live) first novel and it was just as fantastic as her other one. It follows Janice, who has been married for twenty-nine years but was just dumped by her husband, who has run off to be with Janice's tennis partner; and her children Lizzie, who is a 14-year-old high-schooler and Margaret, a 28-year-old who has decided to close her magazine, Snatch, and try to hide from her old friends Visa and Mastercard, as she owes them about $100k in past bills. When she hears the news of the divorce, she comes rushing home, and she, Janice, and Lizzie will soon learn that they are all hiding secrets from one another.

The book was excellent, and I really like the way Brown writes - there is so much detail and the prose seems so effortless. I eagerly await her next novel, whenever that may be.

4.5 stars out of 5.

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