Lucky Me

  • Review
By – December 19, 2011

When life is just right, when all the pieces are in place, when your dreams have come true yet, some­how, the final ingre­di­ent in your hap­pi­ness cake seems to be miss­ing, what then? What is the elu­sive, inde­fin­able some­thing and where do you begin to look for it? Will you ever find it? Does it even exist? Such is the plight of Debra Borden’s hero­ine, Julie Berman. I use the term hero­ine advis­ed­ly. It takes a sub­tle kind of hero­ism to keep the domes­tic ship afloat. It may look like smooth sail­ing but only to those who have nev­er had to jug­gle the con­flict­ing demands and stress­es. Julie has a sup­port­ive hus­band and kids she loves. She has a career that looks like it might take off in a big way. She has close friends and extend­ed fam­i­ly. She even has a mild but excit­ing flir­ta­tion-in-progress to add some extra spice. So why the sense of unease and how to com­bat its symp­toms before the SS Per­fect Fam­i­ly cap­sizes beyond all pos­si­bil­i­ty of res­cue? Julie takes a close look at her afflu­ent and priv­i­leged upbring­ing in an attempt to fig­ure it all out. A series of domes­tic crises cause her to con­front her­self with some hon­est truths and those truths help her to resolve her dilem­mas and to restore her life’s even keel. 

So there it is — anoth­er clev­er­ly spun, fun to read fam­i­ly saga replete with dis­as­ter suc­cess­ful­ly avert­ed. Why read this one which could be a clone of so many? Because it’s wicked­ly, hys­ter­i­cal­ly, fun­ny that’s why! Bor­den squeezes every rich drop of humor out of fam­i­ly rela­tion­ships with a writ­ing style both flaw­less and flow­ing. Julie’s recur­ring dream fea­tur­ing her­self as the guest star on Oprah could become a true com­e­dy clas­sic. My only quib­ble is that the hap­pi­ly-ever-after res­o­lu­tion is too per­fect, too easy, too good to be true. But there are worse things in life than a per­fect­ly hap­py end­ing. So relax and enjoy the ride through this delight­ful, charm­ing sto­ry — lucky you!

Michal Hoschan­der Malen is the edi­tor of Jew­ish Book Coun­cil’s young adult and children’s book reviews. A for­mer librar­i­an, she has lec­tured on top­ics relat­ing to lit­er­a­cy, run book clubs, and loves to read aloud to her grandchildren.

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