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Summer Blowout

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3.45 of 5 stars 3.45  ·  rating details  ·  2,065 ratings  ·  300 reviews
Bella Shaughnessy is addicted to lipstick with names like My Chihuahua Bites and Kiss My Lips, an occupational hazard, since she works as a stylist and makeup artist for her family's small chain of beauty salons in Marshbury, Massachusetts, along with her four half-brothers and -sisters. The owner is her father, Lucky Shaughnessy, a gregarious, three-times-divorced charmer ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published June 3rd 2008 by Hachette Books
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156th out of 163 books — 67 voters
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Kristi
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Gina
three and half stars. It was a good, quick beach read but I hate when the title and cover falsely make the reader believe they are actually picking up a book that has something to do with summer or the beach as this story really didn't have either. Story line focuses around a family owned hair salon and the main character dealing with her half sister stealing her ex husband.
Kimberly
Jul 09, 2008 Kimberly rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: chick-lit readers.
I LOVED this book. It was like sitting down to watch a favorite sitcom. Claire Cook also wrote Must Love Dogs, which is the movie Jason and I saw the day we got engaged, and we had absolutely loved it. So I thought surely another book by the same author would be just as good if not better. And I was so right, Claire Cook did not disappoint! 3 days was all it took for me to tear through this book, I just couldn't manage to put it down, and that's fast for me. I loved all the girly descriptions of ...more
Karen
My Review of Summer Blowout by Claire Cook

Claire Cook once again ventures into the genre of the “living is easy” summer beach read with her latest book, Summer Blowout. Bella Shaughnessy’s fascination with makeup, particularly lipsticks with names such as Kiss My Lips or Catfight, is the daughter of loving but divorced Irish parents. Her father, Lucky, was married three times, but still holds a place in his heart for Bella’s mother. He has a mania for all things Italian ever since their honeymoo
...more
Andrea
Every summer I dream of lounging on the beach and reading paperback novel after paperback novel. Every summer I'm stuck at home for one reason or another (no vacation time, no money, you name it). Instead, I head to my local library and look for books I'd imagine myself reading on the beach, bring them home with me, and pretend. Claire Cook's books always fit the bill, so I recently checked out Summer Blowout.

Bella was a quirky, fun narrator.

Her family was delightfully rambunctious.

That's what I
...more
Linda
Bella is furious and heartbroken. Her ex-husband was stolen by her half-sister, Sophia, BEFORE he was her ex. She is done with men and doesn't ever want to see Sophia again. The last is a little difficult since her father owns a number of beauty salons in Boston and the whole family works in the business....inlcuding two of his ex-wives. While working at a college fair, she meets Sean Ryan, an entrepreneur who is attracted to Bella. Bella likes Sean, but is afraid to let herself fall in love aga ...more
Monie
After 10 years of marriage Bella Shaughnessy’s husband leaves her and after the divorce he starts dating Bella’s half-sister Sophia. To make matters worse all of Lucky Shaughnessy’s children, from 3 different wives, work for Lucky in his hair salon/make up artist business so Bella has to work with Sophia on a daily basis.

On one of her make-up artist gigs Bella meets Sean Ryan. Bella however is still hurting over her ex and her sister’s betrayal so she keeps him at arm’s length and just when Sean
...more
Lynn
A quick, fluffy, fun summer read. A tale around a truly modern family where wives, ex-wives, half-and full siblings, gays, straights, you name it, are all blended into one crazy mess that seems to work for all of them as they strive to keep the family chain of beauty salons going. Bella is trying to deal with her recent divorce, made all the more painful because the "other woman" is actually her younger, beloved half-sister. But in this family there is no running away from personal problems. The ...more
Carol Brill
predictable, easy beach read. Bella's Irish father is a wanna-be Italian who owns beauty and make-up salons and has 3 ex-wife's. Bella, her brother, and sisters, including the half-sister who "stole" Bella's husband all work together. Cute and funny story
Julia
Jul 05, 2008 Julia rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Krissy
What a great, summer book to read and then finish out near a lake waiting for fireworks.
Bella's family owns a chain hair salons in Marshbury, MA. Her father, Lucky Shaughnessy, a self-proclaimed Italiophile, is the patriarch. Two ex-wives and all the assorted kids work in various salons as part of this quirky, extended family business. Bella meets a handsome entrepreneur, Sean Ryan, and the idea for Bella's Box of Beauty Basics is born. The question is, how long can she keep her idea to herself
...more
Ruth
Have you ever met a dysfunctional Irish family whose father thinks they're Italian? This was my third Claire Cook book plus I saw Must Love Dogs as a movie. The Shaughnessy family has several beauty salons which is staffed by a combinaiton of sisters, brothers, father and two of his three ex-wives. The book ia a quick read and the dialogue is humorous. After Bella's husband is stolen away by her half sister, she no longer wanted to be near Shopia or sit near her at weekly salon meetings. Is bloo ...more
Jackie
Clair Cook (author of Life's a Beach and Must Love Dogs) has done it again--Summer Blowout is another great summer beach read that will make youlaugh out loud darn near every page. This time she introduces us to Bella Shaughnessy, a hairdresser and makeup artist who is addicted to lipstick. She works in the big, chaotic family business though things have been rather awkward since her half sister started dating her exhusband. Things get even more interesting after tiny "purse pooch" Precious and ...more
Erin
This book had a great cover and a great title, but it was totally bland. Cliched characters, way too much dog and the main character had some of the ditziest opinions I've ever seen. She actually questioned why a state needs representation in Washington and considers Nancy Pelosi a celebrity. I hope the author isn't this misinformed and she was just being humorous. At any rate, skip this one...it's truly not funny and doesn't live up to it's breezy, pretty cover.
Marie
"This is a fun book - it's not going to change your life, but it will entertain you. If will take your mind off your own troubles as you get to Bella and her family. I learned more about makeup and salons that I ever knew before - and even though I hardly own lipgloss -- it was fun. This would be a great beach read, waiting room read or just for the heck of it read."
Brenda
Adorable book about a strong willed/marshmallow of a woman. Super fun insight into a dysfunctional family that loves each other and seems to work. A somewhat crass sex encounter on one page, but you can skip it and not lose any of the story. Book will make you laugh and will even give you lots of makeup tips!!!
Judy Collins
As usual, Claire Cook knows how to make you laugh. A chick-lit, light summer read about Bella, a lover of cosmetics and involved in the family business of beauty salons where she works as a makeup artist and hair stylist. The family is full of drama and dysfunction and a chain of salons to deal with.

Bella’s marriage ends when her husband leaves for her half- sister. She is not looking for a relationship and wants to get lost in her work, and young Sean comes into the picture, helping her realiz
...more
Just - The romance reader
Holy Cannoli, what a fun read! (If you've read the book you get my "holy cannoli" comment) With each book, I grow to be more of a Claire Cook fan. This book was light and fun, yet not too silly. And Sean Ryan seems like my kind of man!
Susan
I found this book very entertaining. Even though there were many elements present in this book as in her past efforts - large family, single/newly divorced woman, animals - I still enjoyed spending my time in Marshbury.
Amy Dowler
This is a good and quick beach read. Maybe a little too much into the makeup descriptions but cute book anyways. Very similar to the rest of her books.
Barb (Boxermommyreads)
I loved "Must Love Dogs" - both the book and the movie. So when I saw this at the library, I grabbed it on a whim. It was on the shorter side, which was fine because I didn't find myself really invested in the story or the characters. The family in the book is super dysfunctional and while I have no problem with that, I felt the book introduced too many characters much too soon and without much explanation or back story. The dog storyline is rather cute, but everything else was pretty much predi ...more
Berit
Delightful! If only I'd had a beach to read it on.
Mia
Perfect book to read during an afternoon by the pool.
Christina
Pretty well-written but storyline is forgettable. The characters are certainly quirky and loveable, but not realistic. The faux-Italian family idea is hilarious. I loved how staunch the father was on pretending to be an authentic Italian family. As someone who is not big on cosmetic or beauty products, most of those small details just bored me. I love dogs and am obsessed about dogs, but there were too many dog-moments in this novel even for me. Bella and Sean's romance was too predictable. Feel ...more
Esther Bernstein
Full review on Reader's Dialogue: http://readersdialogue.blogspot.com

Bella is still trying to get over the fact that her husband ran off with her half-sister. Dealing with her big, messy family is never easy and she's sworn off men - at least for a while. But when she meets a cute guy giving away college application kits at the college fair where her family has a beauty booth, and that guy turns out to have an idea that might give her some independence from her family, Bella's resolution is sore
...more
Whitney Oaks
I love this book! I started reading it after finishing The Gates by John Connolly. I didn't want to have nightmares and this looked like a light read. I was right, but I was also surprised at how quickly I read it. Only a few hours. I couldn't put it down! I was reading it in bed while J was sleeping and had to keep myself from laughing too loudyly, quite a few times.

This is my first Claire Cook and I'm glad I wasn't disappointed. I have seen her other novel, Must Love Dogs but have never read
...more
Louise
Nice easy reading for an afternoon!

From dust jacket:

"Bella Shaughnessy is addicted to lipstick with names like My Chihuahua Bites and Kiss My Lips, an occupational hazard, since she works as a stylist and makeup artist for her family's small chain of beauty salons in Marshbury, Massachusetts, along with her brother, sister, and two half-sisters. The owner is her father, Lucky Shaughnessy, a gregarious, three-times-divorced charmer with Donald Trump hair, who is obsessed with all things Italian a
...more
Lori Whitwam
3.5-4 actually. Book-wise, it was probably a 3.5, but a 4 because it was exactly the type of book I wanted to be reading yesterday.

Bella's husband left her last year... for her younger sister. This would be bad enough, but the entire insane Irish-but-fake-Italian (thanks to her thrice-divorced Italianophile Irish father) works together in his chain of salons. So Bella can't even stay away from Sophia, the betraying little sister.

She doesn't know what she wants to do with her life, after 10 year
...more
Victoria
Three Sentence Synopsis and Recommendation: Bella has been betrayed by her half-sister, who slept with her ex-husband. At a public makeup demonstration, she meets entrepreneur Sean Ryan, who helps her start a sideline business. Misunderstandings ensue, involving her personal life and the family business, conflict is resolved, and Bella and Sean eventually end up dating.[return][return]Recommendation: This is a quick airplane/beach read. Light and fluffy, this book should take little time to fini ...more
Alea
Bella Shaughnessy works at her family salon(s) with her brother and four sisters (two of them half). And also her two stepmothers, thought we see them much less. Her over the top father runs the whole business. He's been obsessed with Italy forever even though they are of Irish ancestry. If this isn't the setup for a hilarious story I don't know what is. I immediately thought of the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding and all the inter family antics.

Bella has been divorced from her ex-husband Craig
...more
Denise Wagner
Bella Shaughnessy is a young, attractive divorcee who works with her family in her father’s salon. She comes from an interesting family background – her parents are divorced (her father, three times), her half-sister slept with her now ex-husband while they were separated, her brother is happily married to a man, and her father insists on making their family Italian, when they are really Irish. Bella is frustrated with men, her sister, and her family for how she is treated, and she decides it’s ...more
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I wrote my first novel in my minivan at 45. At 50, I walked the red carpet at the Hollywood premiere of the adaptation of my second novel, Must Love Dogs, starring Diane Lane and John Cusack. I'm now the New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author of 14 books. If you have a buried dream, take it from me, it is NEVER too late!

I've reinvented myself once again by turning Must Lov
...more
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“Maybe if the right person floats into your life, you have to jump in with both feet and try to make it work before the tide turns.” 17 likes
“Why is it that even when you're trying your hardest not to get attached, something still sneaks up on you?” 12 likes
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