She Makes It Look Easy - Marybeth Whalen
Released June 2011
Reviewed by Tracy Farnsworth
Moving to a new neighborhood with three rambunctious boys isn't easy for Ariel Baxter. Her husband's new job means he's away on business trips frequently. Things pick up when her new neighbor Justine Miller befriends her.
Justine is seemingly perfect. Her house is organized. She bakes constantly. In fact, she makes everything she feeds her family. There's no packaged food at Justine's house. Soon Justine invites Ariel into her clutter-free world by setting Ariel up with her organizational book for managing everything.
Justine's not as perfect as she seems though. Her marriage isn't all it's cracked up to be. As Ariel soon learns, Justine doesn't really know a thing about friendship and certainly has flaws that force Ariel to realize who her true friends are.
I really enjoyed She Makes It Look Easy. I started reading it during a thunderstorm that had my cats freaking out in the wee hours yesterday morning and ended up spending the next 2.5 hours engrossed in the story. It's a shame that Ariel is so dependent on Justine because the reader quickly realizes what a manipulator she really is. Watching Ariel grow and realize her mistakes is refreshing.
I didn't read Marybeth Whalen's previous novel, The Mailbox. I've heard it is also fantastic and am tempted to find a copy. I know I'll love the writing style. She's definitely an author to watch.