Author: Elise Chidley
Release Date: October 29, 2008
Genre: Chick Lit
Rating: **** 1/2 (out of 5)
From the back cover:
Lizzie Buckley is having doubts about her picture-perfect world. She does love her country estate, precocious three-year-old twins, and handsome husband. But nobody warned her about postpartum depression and the toll it would take on her marriage. Or how she'd fantasize about chucking it all for a box of chocolates and an uninterrupted bath.
Lizzie vents these frustrations in an e-mail and her life is shattered: James gets the message by mistake. Lizzie soon finds herself uprooting her children to start over in a ramshackle garden cottage. Now facing life - and the twins - alone, Lizzie struggles to reinvent herself and forget about her soon-to-be ex. But when thoughts of James still haunt her, she begins to wonder if the best part of marriage starts after the fairy tale ends...
I really enjoyed Your Roots Are Showing. I thought it was entertaining and funny, and the characters were very well written. The main character Lizzie was easy to sympathize with and she actually seemed like a real person. She didn't always make the best choices for herself, but who does? Lizzie's bad choices weren't used as a foil for the plot, however; she wasn't binging on food or acting irrationally because something needed to happen in the book. Instead, it became very clear exactly why Lizzie made the choices she did and where her insecurities stemmed from. I liked that occurrences in the book happened for a reason, rather than just to move the story forward.
One thing I really appreciated about Your Roots Are Showing was that it started with the premise of the book already in place, meaning Lizzie was already moving out of her home with her children when the book began. The reader is told the story of the errant e-mail making its way to Lizzie's husband James through a flashback. I liked this for two reasons. First, it is clear what happens from the summary on the back of the book. There's no need for it to be rehashed in the first pages of the book, when the author is trying to "hook" the reader. Second, it puts aside that dread that you usually have in the bottom of your stomach when you read a book and know something bad is about to happen. I really liked this approach.
The ending was a little surprising. Though I enjoyed it (and I won't say any more here), it seemed to come out of the blue. Still, it wrapped the book up very well as a nice neat package complete with a bow on top.
At 384 pages, Your Roots Are Showing is longer than your average chick lit book. However, the story flies by and by the end, the reader doesn't even notice the length. This is a book I'd recommend to anyone who enjoys chick lit, and/or new mothers (or those thinking of becoming mothers!)
A big thank you to Miriam at Hachette Book Group for sending me this book to review!