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Thursday, January 25, 2018

Woman Last Seen in Her Thirties by Camille Pagan

Setting: U.S. and Italy
Genre: Women's Fiction
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Author: Camille Pagan
Release Date: February 27, 2018

In what should have been time spent enjoying a new life as empty nesters, Maggie Harris is stunned when her husband announces he's leaving her for a younger woman. She's simply floored by his decision to toss decades of marriage aside.

Maggie has put everything into raising their kids, keeping up with household management, and working as a bookkeeper. Somewhere along the way, she realizes she lost herself.

After a few weeks of being miserable, Maggie takes the tickets she and her husband purchased to go to Italy and goes off on a solo vacation. What happens there changes her life and gives her the chance to explore what she really wants to do now.

I hate to say, but there were times I saw a bit of myself in Maggie. I gave up a position as the administrative assistant to a company CEO to raise my kids. I don't regret it, but now that they're leaving the nest, it's funny how the world looks at you. I'd always planned to return to the workforce outside the home. Instead, my mom has Alzheimer's, so I will continue to run my home business and bring in a part-time income while being there to care for her.

Given that I felt a strong bond with Maggie, it's no surprise that I loved every page of this book. While I may not have always agreed with her choices, I certainly understood why she made the choices she did.

I loved how the story flowed smoothly without feeling rushed and never feeling too slow. I liked the characters, especially Maggie's very shrewd daughter. I loved Maggie's mother-in-law, who happened to be at about the same place my mom is with her Alzheimer's progression.

Bottom line, Woman Last Seen in Her Thirties is a feel-good novel with likable characters. It's lighthearted at times and poignant at others. I definitely recommend this one.

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