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RECIPE FOR A HAPPY LIFE
Genre: Mainstream, General Mainstream Fiction
If cooked up by a lesser novelist, Recipe for a Happy Life could’ve easily been an unpalatable mess, careening from comedy to tragedy. But Janowitz confidently combines the charm of an awkward heroine; the warmth of a doting grandmother; the heartfelt persistence of an unexpected hero; and the delightful fizz of eccentric supporting characters with just enough bittersweet heartbreak to serve up a fun but satisfying concoction perfect for a summer’s day.
Hard-driving lawyer and young widow Hannah Goldman has always resented the fatherless and peripatetic life forced upon her by her famous photojournalist mother. Her only sense of normalcy is thanks to her loving and eight-times-married (but never divorced!) socialite grandmother, whose gracious Hamptons estate provides the perfect sanctuary when Hannah’s accused of trying to murder (via a nut-laden kiss) her allergic ne’er-do-well boyfriend. Hannah’s horrified to discover that the family of her law-school nemesis, Nate Sugarman, lives next door, but his love may just be the surprise ingredient she needs to sweeten a life that’s seen its share of sorrows. (ST. MARTIN’S GRIFFIN, Jul., 336 pp., $14.99)
Reviewed By: Carolyn Martin
Publisher: ST. MARTIN’S GRIFFIN
Published: July 2013