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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gorgeous summer read, 5 July 2012
By 
Chloe S "Chick Lit Chloe" (Berkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Meryl Streep Movie Club (Paperback)
The book is the story of the women of one family, each going through their own personal turmoil but being united by the weekly Meryl Streep Movie Club held at their guesthouse. There's family matriarch Lolly, who has her own daughter but took in her nieces when they were children after their parents were killed. The three girls think Lolly's distant and not overly affectionate, but when she summons them all to the guesthouse for a surprise announcement, they are left wondering what it could be. Lolly's daughter Kat is running her own cake business but is struggling with her love life and the expectations put on her. Her cousin Isabel, living a comfortable life and married to husband Edward is about to get a shock, one that will make her question everything she thought was true, and welcomes the break at Aunt Lolly's guesthouse. Then there's her sister June, a single mother to son Charlie, and whose heart is still in the past and damaged. Will June be able to find answers to hers (and Charlie's) questions, and will the Meryl Streep movie club make the four women closer again?

What I loved about this book is how much it relies to family to work, and highlights the importance of letting your family take care of you when you really need them. None of the women in the story are especially close at the beginning of the book - sisters Isabel and June don't even speak unless they're at a family occasion, and Lolly and Kat aren't exactly a close mother and daughter. Yet events throughout the book enable the women to let down the boundaries they have built up and finally let the others in to help them, even if they can't be of much use, just for emotional support. I loved each of the female characters in the book, Mia March has written them to be really likeable and I found myself feeling sad along with Isabel and June, frustrated along with Kat and accepting along with Lolly.

My favourite character was certainly Isabel. She's a bit of a snob at the start of the book, someone you can't expect to like but as the book goes on, I really warmed to her and felt sorry for her due to her circumstances. She is really going through a bad time, and I liked her development throughout the book. I really enjoyed reading June's story as well, how well she does as a single mother and her wanting to find Charlie's father - that was an intriguing storyline and it was really fun to read too. Lolly and Kat were also well written characters, and the mother-daughter relationship wasn't at all perfect which I am sure a lot of women will be able to relate to in different ways. The chapters are all written from different perspectives too, all in the third person, but the change allows the reader to get more involved in each of the stories, and I found it really fun to read.

The issues in the book were all written so incredibly well. I don't want to go into any real detail here to avoid spoilers, but I found all the themes weren't easy but were weaved into the book beautifully and were each important for their characters in their own ways. I found the way March used Meryl Streep's movies at exactly the right part of the book to be fantastic, I haven't seen some of the movies but they are each perfect for the time they appear and for the characters to see something in them that helps them too. The whole thing is just beautifully written, from the lovely descriptions of Lolly and Kat's guesthouse, to the small town they live in - it all sounds perfect, and a great cast of likeable characters make it even better. This book will be a keeper on my shelf as I know I'll want to read it again, and this is certainly up there amongst my favourite reads this year, it's fab!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Cracking good read, 2 April 2014
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I thought this book had everything I like in a book, good stories, likable characters and a (fairly) happy ending. It is a book I would happily read again sometime!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A compulsive read!, 3 Mar 2013
This review is from: The Meryl Streep Movie Club (Paperback)
Wow! I loved this book and couldn't wait to keep reading it to find out what was going to happen, something that hasn't happened to me with a book for a while now! The story centres around four strong women. Matriarch Lolly, her daughter Kat and her two nieces Isabel and June. The four women in the book were so incredibly written. I wasn't sure I was going to like any of them to begin with, indeed they don't seem to like each other to begin with, however I found each of them endearing themselves to me, as well as to each other as the book went on.

Sisters Isabel and June find themselves back with their aunt in the guesthouse where they grew up, having lost their parents when they were just teenagers. It seemed that this event int he girls lives pushed them apart rather than drawing them together, so when they find themselves back at the guest house they struggle to talk to one another, but soon learn that they have more in common than they think. I really loved the fact that June was a bookseller, she has a passion for books in the same way that lolly has her passion for Meryl Streep movies.

My favourite character in the book was Kat, the way she coped with what life had to the throw at her by baking and cooking I thought was really lovely. There is a wonderful scene in the book where she goes to learn how to make some Italian pastries, the scene was beautifully written and I found myself loving her character even more as well as feeling decidedly hungry. The level of description by March makes you feel as if you are there by the sea in New England with these women. I wanted to roam the rooms of the guest houses further, browse the book store where jan worked and take walks along the sea front with Isabel. She really brought the words on the page to life!

The Meryl Streep movies are almost like a fifth main character in the book. They are woven into the events of the novel so cleverly and each movie comes in at precisely the right point that one is never left wondering why, indeed, the novel has such a title. The lessons and morals that the movies give out, are exactly what is called for at that point in the story.

This is beautifully written novel, one which was a nice quick read and would be perfect to read on an early summers day imagining the waves crashing into the harbour walls, and guests taking cocktails in the garden of the Three Captains Inn. The author deals with some serious life issues in the book so well that one never feels down when reading it, only filled with joy at the relationships that are being built between these four woman and the ways they are living their lives. A properly engaging, heart warming tale!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great read, 26 May 2014
This review is from: The Meryl Streep Movie Club (Paperback)
I loved this book thought the characters where interesting there was a lot of pathos and although if written differently it could tip the balance and be a bit depressing this was not the case. It held my attention I wanted to keep reading and felt the story was interesting without any bad language would recommend to a friend.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous little book, 23 May 2014
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This review is from: The Meryl Streep Movie Club (Paperback)
This book caught my eye because I too love Meryl films! It suprised me by being very good, I couldn't put it down, it was so enjoyable. The first book I have read by Mia March and not the last! It even makes me want to visit Boothbay in Maine because it sounds just glorious there. Like other readers say, its about a family of sisters,cousins and a strong Aunt who reconnect through their love of a good Meryl film. Well worth a read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars movie time, 6 Feb 2013
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kept me reading well into the night seperate sroties bound up by one person you end up being part of it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good heartwarming story., 9 Oct 2012
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This review is from: The Meryl Streep Movie Club (Paperback)
Three estranged women - two sisters(Isabel & June Nash) and the cousin( Kat Weller) they grew up with after a haunting tragedy find unexpected happiness in the most unexpected way by watching Meryl Streep movies together. It is only when the three are summoned to their family matriarch's inn on the coast of Maine for an important announcement by Lolly Weller(Kat's mother & Isabel's&June's Auntie) that they are able to reconnect through surprising and heartfelt discussions of movies such as Out of Africa and Mamma Mia! and discover who they really are and what they truly want...

I did quite enjoy reading this story it was very heart warming and did bring a few tears to my eyes a couple of times. At times i felt like i actually knew the characters and was very happy to read that they all found happiness in the end. If your looking for a light beach read then you will be disappointed because this story just can't be rushed you have to enjoy every moment. I loved that the author Mia March chose Meryl Streep films as the one to be inspiring the characters with each film and how they really felt and their own opinion.

I would recommend anyone to read if you loved films that Meryl Streep has been in.
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The Meryl Streep Movie Club
The Meryl Streep Movie Club by Mia March (Paperback - 30 Jun 2012)
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