Meet Faye, Marilyn, Alice, and Shirley. The four founding members of the Hot Flash Club, where the topics of motherhood, sex and men are discussed with double servings of chocolate cake...Faye is an artist and a determinedly cheerful widow. Now she's got a tricky problem to bring to the club's table: how can they catch her perfect son-in-law ...Read MoreMeet Faye, Marilyn, Alice, and Shirley. The four founding members of the Hot Flash Club, where the topics of motherhood, sex and men are discussed with double servings of chocolate cake...Faye is an artist and a determinedly cheerful widow. Now she's got a tricky problem to bring to the club's table: how can they catch her perfect son-in-law cheating on her daughter? Shirley is a healer. Though her yoga-slender body belie her years, dating one too many losers and the strain of being broke make her feel her age. Shirley has a secret dream: to own a spa. But first she needs to believe in herself, in her abilities, and in her friends at the club. Marilyn is a palaeontologist who has spent so many years looking at dried-up fossils, she feels she's in danger of becoming one herself. Worried that her son is about to marry the wrong woman, she gets some help from her friends, who transform her from a caterpillar to a butterfly...Alice, the executive, has soared to the top of the corporate ladder. Now her shoes are killing her and the younger jackals are circling in for the kill. But as the inspiration behind the Hot Flash Club, she's about to discover something extraordinary: contentment. From the bestselling author of Between Husbands and Friends and Custody, comes a wise, wonderful and hilarious coming of (middle) age novel about four intrepid women - ready to face the best years of their lives.Read Less
Publishers Weekly, 2003-11-24 It's chick lit for the AARP crowd in Thayer's spirited but not very funny 14th novel. A chance meeting at a cocktail party brings four Boston-area women in their 50s and 60s together to found the titular club, in which they confess their woes and plot to help one another. Recovering alcoholic and perennial hippie Shirley, a talented masseuse, unknots workaholic Alice, who clues Shirley on how to dress for success, craft a business plan and establish her dream spa-retreat. Brilliant and lovable, but a "dowdy academic," Marilyn botches her attempt to save Alice's high-power job but rediscovers her sexuality (after the Club revamps her wardrobe) and loses her insufferable husband, Theodore. Faye, a widow and blocked painter, solves a locked-room mystery while sleuthing on behalf of Marilyn and also discovers her inner art therapist. Thayer dutifully lays down her threads and weaves them into a busy plot. She bluntly and repeatedly tackles the physical consequences of menopause: hip spread ("a confetti of cellulite"), flabby midsections ("like having a sleeping puppy lying on a pillow in her lap, except that when she stood up, the puppy, pillow and lap remained") and hair loss (but "you can get a wig for your pubic hair.... Something called a merkin"). There are tender and funny moments, but the novel suffers from awkward expository dialogue, long stretches of backstory, and-surprising from much-published Thayer (Between Husbands and Friends; Stepping)-too many instances of telling rather than showing. (Jan.) Forecast: Despite its flaws, this title is likely to prove popular with women's book groups, at whom it's obviously aimed. Ballantine plans "author chats" with clubs and "outreach" to Web sites dedicated to women and books. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Copyright in bibliographic data and cover images is held by Nielsen Book Services Limited, Baker & Taylor, Inc., or by their respective licensors, or by the publishers, or by their respective licensors. For personal use only. All rights reserved. All rights in images of books or other publications are reserved by the original copyright holders.