Title: Goodbye To All That
Publisher: Bell Bridge Books
Pub Date: April 15th, 2012
Author: Judith Arnold
Received From: NetGalley
Being the middle child is never easy, but thirty-six-year-old Jill Bendel is about to find out just how hard that job is when her mother throws away her sensible pumps, packs up her collection of classical music and runs away from home.
Longtime wife and mother Ruth Bendel loves her family but hates her life. Husband Richard doesn't even know how the steam iron works, let alone how a woman works. When Ruth's last nerve snaps, she finally does what she's wanted to do so many times before—she gets an apartment, a job, a new life and new friends.
How will her pampered family survive?
Who will take care of her son Doug's daughters when he flies off for a romantic week with his wife? How can youngest daughter Melissa contemplate getting pregnant now that she's the child of a broken home? How is Jill going to juggle the demands of her own marriage, her kids, her siblings and her career while simultaneously trying to get her parents to reconcile? Why is it that when things fall apart, everyone expects Jill to put them back together?
Man, it's tough to be in a family no matter your age, that's one thing I took from this book. Jill is the middle child of her family, and adult herself with a husband and kids when she finds out that her parents are splitting up and her mother has moved into a small apartment and taken a job. Jill's siblings each have a bust life of their own as a eye surgeon and a lawyer. So Jill is often the catch all for family issues!
While this was a cute story in places and my heart goes out to Jill, I often felt a bit disconnected from the real story of the parents split and in all honesty I hate the ending. It just felt like nothing was tied up or completed. I've had to take some time to really think through what the purpose of that may be, so I thought I'd share with you that I feel like it makes the point that life isn't always easily solved!