Review: 'The Young Wives Club' by Julie Pennell (2017)
Laura Landry’s quarterback husband was her ticket out of Toulouse. But when a devastating football injury sidelines him, they’re forced to move back to the small town she was so desperate to leave. As Brian starts drinking instead of rehabbing his knee, Laura must reevaluate what her future looks like…and if it includes her husband.
For years, Madison Blanchette has been waiting for bad-boy musician Cash Romero to commit to her. When wealthy George Dubois asks her out, she figures she may as well wait in style. Life with George means weekend trips to New Orleans, gourmet meals, and expensive gifts. At first she loves how George’s affection sparks Cash’s jealousy, but when George proposes to Madison, she finds herself torn between two men…
All Claire Thibodeaux wants is to be the perfect wife and mother. If she can do everything right she won’t end up like her mom, a divorced, single parent trying to make ends meet. But when Claire’s husband Gavin, a well-respected local pastor, starts spending late nights at work and less time in their bed, she can’t help but fear that history is about to repeat itself…
Gabrielle Vaughn never thought she’d end up with someone like her fiancé. The son of a prominent congressman, Tony Ford is completely out of her league—which is why she lied to him about everything from having a college degree to the dark truth about her family. She knows she has to come clean, but how do you tell the love of your life that your entire relationship is a lie?
As these young wives come together to help each other through life, love, and heartbreak, they discover that there are no easy answers when it comes to matters of the heart.
Julie Pennell’s ‘The Young Wives Club’ is without a doubt one of the 2017 new releases I have been most excited about checking out. I straight away liked the book cover with its attractive pastel colours and I just loved the sound of the story itself. I’ve always had a soft spot for outlines like this one with a focus on multiple female characters and a Southern setting and feel. The author, Julie Pennell, has written for Seventeen magazine, Teen Vogue, and TODAY.com, and this is actually her debut novel. I had a really good feeling about this one and only hoped the novel and its author would manage to live up to my, I have to admit: pretty high, expectations…!
Laura, Madison, Claire and Gabby have been friends through thick and thin while growing up in the small town of Toulouse in Louisiana, but life is about to throw quite a bit of trouble and chaos towards them. Laura loves her life being married to her high school sweetheart and popular football player Brian, even though she gave up absolutely everything just to be with him. But when Brian suffers an injury that changes their whole life, Laura is forced to rethink the decisions made. Madison has always been in love with Cash Romero, but when she is given the chance to finally help her family with their financial troubles, she feels it is time to leave some of her daydreams behind. Claire has always been the 100% supportive preacher’s wife, but her husband Gavin is making it quite difficult for her to continue with this role. Gabby has never felt the way she feels about her boyfriend Tony and she can’t imagine anything better than spending the rest of her life with him, but she has kept things from Tony; things that are now about to rise to the surface and change everything…
Oh, I loved this novel! I’m so happy to say that Julie Pennell’s debut novel lived up to my expectations and I’m already incredibly excited about the fact that we will hopefully be able to read more of her books in the future. At the core of this book we’ve got four different women who grew up in the same town and are close friends, but each of them is dealing with her own issues, all in a way having to do with marriage/being in love. Laura, Madison, Claire and Gabby are in their early twenties and I think every reader will be able to relate to at least one of these young women in one way or another, just like I did. I personally particularly warmed to Gabby and Laura, but I also really enjoyed Claire and Madison’s stories, and the four storylines combined really turn this novel into an incredibly enjoyable and simply great read.
I really loved Julie Pennell’s writing style; I loved how there was a switch between the four different stories and characters, and the writing was just really comfortable and flowed well and at a good pace. I also think the book has a great setting with a small town in Louisiana where everyone knows each other and these girls have been through it all together, no matter what. The book has an important message at its core, showing that marriage does not mean losing yourself; you are still a person, you are still you, and you should have your own things and your own dreams to chase. I think I could gush about this novel for a few more paragraphs, but I’d rather have all of you pick up this novel yourself and give it the read it definitely deserves. ‘The Young Wives Club’ is a heart-warming and simply brilliant read that I thoroughly enjoyed until the very last page… Loved it, loved it, loved it!