Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Book Review: Husband Material, by Emily Belden

Guest review by: Becki Bayley

This BOA place is nice, albeit kind of dark and pretty crowded at 6:00 p.m. for a city full of people who don’t like to dine until after 9:00 p.m. But that’s okay because I believe those things – dark and crowded – are helping to take the attention off the fact that I’ve sausaged myself into cigarette pants that suddenly feel two sizes too small.

And that I have Decker’s urn in my purse.

I’ll admit that it feels inappropriate to have brought Decker along to something like this, but what other choice did I have, given Debbie’s stop-at-nothing antics? I try not to think too much about the fact that Decker in my bag makes us a party of seven and glance down at my watch. This dinner will be over relatively soon, and once it is, I’ll head straight back to my place, where I will put Decker back on my nightstand or the kitchen counter.

What I thought would be a pop-fiction with a 20-something trying to get married ended up being way more involved with feelings, and histories, and relationships than I originally expected.

Official synopsis:
Book Review: Husband Material, by Emily Belden
Twenty-nine-year-old Charlotte Rosen has a secret: she’s a widow. Ever since the fateful day that leveled her world, Charlotte has worked hard to move forward. Great job at a hot social media analytics company? Check. Roommate with no knowledge of her past? Check. Adorable dog? Check. All the while, she’s faithfully data-crunched her way through life, calculating the probability of risk—so she can avoid it.

Yet Charlotte’s algorithms could never have predicted that her late husband’s ashes would land squarely on her doorstep five years later. Stunned but determined, Charlotte sets out to find meaning in this sudden twist of fate, even if that includes facing her perfectly coiffed, and perfectly difficult, ex-mother-in-law—and her husband’s best friend, who seems to become a fixture at her side whether she likes it or not.

But when her quest reveals a shocking secret, Charlotte is forced to answer questions she never knew to ask and to consider the possibility of forgiveness. And when a chance at a new life arises, she’ll have to decide once and for all whether to follow the numbers or trust her heart.

This was definitely fun to read for a few days. I found Charlotte to be likable, but also a bit self-centered. Well, the book is about her, so I suppose that makes sense. But the plot seemed very smoothly laid out, and then resolved. Not being a widow, I suppose I’m in no place to comment on how she dealt with things, but it seemed quite neatly tied up to me.

There were a few minutes near the end when I thought maybe the happily-ever-after wasn’t going to be quite what I thought it would be, but that ended up being the whole point – for Charlotte to quit planning and being so confident in what to expect next.

I did love Charlotte’s job as a number-cruncher for a company who measures social media interaction. As a blogger and influencer myself from time to time, I felt I could relate a bit to that part of her life. It was also a unique job that I haven’t seen a character do before.

Overall, I’d give this book 3 out of 5 stars. The epilogue wrapped it up nicely in the end. I do love being able to finish a book and not wonder about what might have happened to my new ‘friends’ in the book.

{click here to pre-order - Husband Material will be in stores and online on December 30, 2019}

Becki Bayley loves reading, her kids, sleeping, and keeping cozy. The order of those loves changes from time to time (okay, the kids do always come first ;) ). She also blogs at SweetlyBSquared.com.


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