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Skipping a Beat

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3.73 of 5 stars 3.73  ·  rating details  ·  4,681 ratings  ·  644 reviews
Julia and Michael meet in high school in their small, poverty-stricken West Virginia hometown. Both products of difficult childhoods -- Julia’s father is a compulsive gambler and Michael’s mother abandoned his family when he was a young boy – they find a sense of safety and mutual understanding in each other. Shortly after graduation they flee West Virginia to start afresh ...more
Paperback, 327 pages
Published February 22nd 2011 by Washington Square Press (first published January 1st 2011)
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CoffeeBook Chick
I've been reading books that are making me bawl my eyes out lately, and this one did the job exceedingly well. Sarah Pekkanen fleshed out real people in an effortlessly convincing way, and has a fierce heart-tugging story line to go along with them.

Julia and Michael are high school sweethearts from West Virginia. They grew up with dysfunctional families and as soon as they graduate, they move to Washington, DC to begin a new life. Incredibly smart and always antsy, it's Michael who takes them co
...more
Amy
High-school sweethearts Julie & Michael have left behind their small town and are in pursuit of living a life better than their modest upbringings and achieving the American dream. When Michael decides to start a sports drink company, neither of them could ever expect how quickly his business would takeoff or what it would be like to be millionaires. As money is introduced into their life, their marriage begins to crumble as Michael is increasingly unavailable due to the success of his compa ...more
Read, Run, Ramble
WOW...my immediate thought is just WOW! Sarah Pekkanen became one of my favorite authors after I read The Opposite of Me. She's become increasingly more so over the years as I've followed her on Facebook and read the short stories she has released. I don't know why it took me so long to read Skipping a Beat especially since I pre-ordered it so I've had it in my possession since the day it hit the market!

I had no idea what an awesome story I was missing by this wonderful author!

Julia and Michael
...more
Anita
The publisher's summary of Skipping a Beat doesn't begin to tell the depth and passion that this story unfolds and wraps the reader in. The first line in the book begins"When my husband Michael died for the first time,".....a reader should know this is going to be a great journey. Julia and Michael have been married for many years, and they are successful and wealthy to most people looking into their lives, but a brush with death, a sudden heart attack changes everything. Their relationship is a ...more
Katie
A couple's not-very-happy marriage gets completely shaken up when the husband has a cardiac arrest and awakens with a resolve to give away all his money and rebuild their relationship. The wife likes the money and is horrified by this idea, and yet... is drawn to it.

Wow, I got suckered into reading some serious chick lit (not that I have anything against GOOD chick lit... Bridget Jones is one of my favorite books). I must have read some biased reviews somewhere, thinking this was a little more s
...more
Michelle
I have a secret. I was not a fan of Ms. Pekkanen's first novel. It wasn't that it was a horrible novel; I just felt that it was lighter, simplistic chick lit that is perfectly fine and is acceptable but not my typical fare. Yet, when Jen from Devourer of Books insisted I would love her newest novel, that she cried for the last 25 pages, and that I would love it, I had to trust her judgment and give Skipping a Beat a chance.

It was with a huge amount of skepticism and doubt I approached the first
...more
Shellys♥ Journal
Julia has learned to live indifferent to her husband, Michael, but not indifferent to his wealthy lifestyle. A life altering event changes him. He vows to lay aside his wealth and woo her all over again. During this time Julia reviews their life together - from childhood sweetheart to the present. Can she forgive him?

Did not expect this book to be so moving. Have we all been in a place of indifference with someone in our life? Once we have all but closed that door, how easy is it to reopen? I lo
...more
Danielle
What happens when life gives you an opportunity to fall in love all over again with your first love? Do you take it? Or do years of resentment and distance make it too painful to go back? These are the exact questions Julia faces when her multi-million dollar husband suddenly dies in the middle of a board meeting. After regaining consciousness Michael is completely changed, wanting to leave his life of success behind and focus on what he's rediscovered. His love for Julia. Will it be enough? Onl ...more
Melinda
Maybe I am just too much of a Type A personality for some books that others might actually enjoy.

The premise of this book sounded like it could have been fascinating. A young couple who has fought their way out of low income dysfunctional families to huge success are now challenged by the husband's heart attack and near death experience. His values change, and he decides to give away their money. Sounds like a great basis for a story that looks deeply into values on many levels, and even questi
...more
Stephanie
Sarah Pekkanen has done it again. She weaves a tale that pulls you into the very heart of the story so effortlessly that you forget you are reading. “Skipping a Beat” is raw emotional power that will have you hanging on every word. Each chapter is it’s own cliffhanger; each section adds another piece to the puzzle. “Skipping a Beat” pulls the heartstring of anyone who has ever fallen in love or had his or her heart broken. The carefully crafted plot comes full circle with an ending that surprise ...more
Shari
There are books that draw us in further and further as we glide through the pages, their messages slowly intertwining themselves with each sentence. There are books that end with a bang, pulling us in with a startling, all-encompassing conclusion. And then there are the books that resonate from the first page, the words jumping out like little sprinkles of magic. Sarah Pekkanen’s Skipping a Beat is one of those. It’s more than that, so much more. It’s wisdom, grace, humor, inspiration, reflectio ...more
Georgina
http://chicklitaholic.blogspot.com

Do you believe that “Project Runway, chocolate and margaritas. And suddenly all is right with the world”? Well I know those sure help and that’s exactly the mantra that Julia and Isabelle follow in Skipping A Beat. That and Breyer’s chocolate ice cream can help ease all problems. In my opinion great words of advice and one of the lighter sides of Sarah Pekkanen’s most recent novel Skipping A Beat. On a more serious note, Sarah Pekkanen asks the not so simple que
...more
Mary (BookHounds)
This is the most emotional book I have read in a long time. I actually had to take breaks while reading this since I was so drawn into the story and how real the whole thing seemed. Within pages, I felt like I had known Julia my whole life. I could feel her fear and how much she loved Michael, yet realize they had grown apart. Like most marriages they had forgotten those moments that create the relationship. The ending was exactly how it had to be, although I never saw it coming. I ended up in t ...more
Maggie Kelley
I won a copy of SKIPPING A BEAT in a goodreads giveaway. I was thrilled. Having been completely intrigued by Sarah Pekkanen's first novel, THE OPPOSITE OF ME, I was eager to start reading SKIPPING A BEAT, and I have to say, I became involved in the story, which is filtered through the perceptions of the main character, Julia, very quickly. However, as I read this emotional story of a marriage falling apart and coming together, and falling apart, I became frustrated because as much as I liked the ...more
Tiffany
Reviewed for A Cozy Reader's Corner Reviews [http://acozyreaderscorner.blogspot.com]

On the outside Julia seems to have it all, on the inside Julia is broken; her marriage has seemingly dissolved into a façade though Julia tries to convince herself it will pass. Once married to her best friend, Julia now looks at her husband and sees a stranger. When her world as she knows it changes in an instant, the four minutes and eight seconds following her husband collapse from cardiac arrest solidifies th
...more
katie
without giving too much away, this book is partly about a successful business man, michael, who has a near death experience. this experience makes him ponder the simple, yet important question, what matters most? he quickly realizes all the money in the world has not made him happy and that he is ashamed of the man he has become. he makes some big choices to change the course of his life. the other part of this book is about how these choices affect his wife, julia, who has become quite accustom ...more
Christie Koester
Wow, this was quite the book. I wanted to bawl my eyes out at the end, but at the same time I knew the book had to end the way it did. Sigh. Skipping a Beat had me thinking all through my sleep and into the next day. A wonderful read and I'd recommend this to anyone!
Michelle
This book disappointed me. I really hate to give it only one star, but I couldn't help feeling like the female character was unbelievably whiny...so you're losing all of your money? Puleeaaassee, get over yourself.
Kimberly Russell
Geeze Louise this book was good. I dont want to give anything away - you should just read it. Like now.
Sarah
I don't get all the good reviews. I hate the protagonist and just couldn't sympathize. at. all.
Michelle Lynne
WOW!!!! This book was just amazing! From start to finish!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!
Lauren
Feb 19, 2011 Lauren rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
Skipping a Beat is a book that caught my eye the first time I heard about it, because not only was the cover stunning but the premise sounded intriguing as well as promising. Thankfully enough Sarah Pekkanen's Skipping a Beat was a book that took a hold of my heart with its very first sentence and didn't let go until the very last.

Julia and Michael meet under some unusual and scary circumstances all those years ago and ever since that fateful day they have been hooked on each other. Though, as
...more
Lindz-o
Sep 05, 2011 Lindz-o rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommended to Lindz-o by: O magazine
Shelves: couldn-t-finish
For the love of better things to read, I'm abandoning ship. I got about 70 pages into this, which is a lot more than I probably should have. Right from chapter two, I can tell this is a book I'm not going to like. Obviously, the premise interested me enough to buy the dang thing. The execution, however, feels so contrived.

The main character, Julie/Julia, sounds like a whiny brat to me. Growing up her childhood was mostly idyllic, until her father started gambling. Things get rough for her, she
...more
Jessica Lawlor
High school sweethearts turned successful power couple. Sounds like a fairy tale, right? In the case of Julia and Michael, you’d be wrong. When Julia and Michael met years before, they fell in love when Michael saved Julia from a skeevy ex-con near the train tracks of their West Virginia hometown. From that day on, they were a team; they worked their way through college together and settled in for what they hoped would be a long and happy life.

But the success they both so badly wanted tore them
...more
Cheryl
Julia Dunhill was planning one of her many fund raisers when her life as she knew it was about to get turned upside down very quickly. Julia’s husband, Michael collapses while at work. Michael stood up to speak and his heart just stopped. In fact Michael was officially dead for four minutes and eight seconds.

Lucky for Michael and a little invention called a portable defibrillator. As wikipedia encyclopedia explains, a portable defibrillator is a machine that can help someone who has gone into c
...more
Joti
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Alicia
This is a very solid chick-lit read -- I laughed and cried-- but I also got bogged down in some things that became so distracting that I could almost not finish the book.

Julia and Michael seem to have a picture perfect life. He's the founder of a wildly successful drink company as well as the owner of the Washington basketball team (distraction here -- could the real name not be used for some reason?. Kept rolling my eyes when they referred to the team by its made up name.). She owns her own ver
...more
Christi
Sep 29, 2011 Christi rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Christi by: Kristin (Kritters Ramblings)
Shelves: 2011-reads
It took me a while to warm up to these characters. I think you really needed to get to know them now and where they came from before you could start to care. At first Julia comes across as selfish and materialistic, but as the book unfolds you realize what shaped her need to be self-sufficient and financially independent at any cost. You start to see how Michael made the choices he did.

More than anything, you start to see how easily two people so in love and so great together can slowly start t
...more
Bonnie
Sarah Pekkanen’s latest novel is the story of Michael and Julie, told from Julie’s perspective. After Michael collapses in the middle of a business meeting, he begins to reevaluate the way that he has lived his life, and tries to rejuvenate the love that he replaced with his drive for success.

Julie begins to realize that she too has replaced the love she once felt for Michael with the comforts of life afforded by Michael’s success.

Will Julie give Michael the time to recapture the love that slipp
...more
Girls Gone Reading
Skipping a Beat included a very dynamic main character whose ever shifting perspective kept me on my toes. Early on in the novel, you don’t particularly like Julia.

And although “early” Julia wasn’t my favorite, Pekkanen does a great job of creating empathy for her even when you can’t understand her reasoning. As a reader, Julia’s motives are suspect. Why would you stay with someone just for money? How can a house make up for love?

Questions like these kept racing through my head in the beginning
...more
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"Fans of Jennifer Weiner and Emily Giffin will strongly appreciate this rising star in women's fiction." - Library Journal.
Internationally bestselling author Sarah Pekkanen's newest book is CATCHING AIR. (May 2014, Atria/Simon&Schuster). She is also the author of THE BEST OF US, THE OPPOSITE OF ME, SKIPPING A BEAT, and THESE GIRLS. Sarah's linked free short estories, published by Simon&Schuster
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More about Sarah Pekkanen...
The Opposite of Me These Girls The Best of Us Catching Air All Is Bright: A Short Story

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“Sometimes following the path that looked the safest was what led to the most hurt...” 13 likes
“The core truth of our marriage, the most important thing for me to remember, was that Michael and I loved each other. Our love had gotten pushed aside and bruised and buried, but it has always existed.” 7 likes
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