Beth's Reviews > Joy for Beginners

Joy for Beginners by Erica Bauermeister
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's review
Jul 21, 11

bookshelves: audio, realistic-fiction
Read from June 27 to July 21, 2011

Joy for Beginners is less of a novel and more of a series of short stories woven together through Kate, the character who hosts a dinner party for her friends to celebrate the winning of her battle with breast cancer. At this dinner party, Kate challenges all of her friends to complete a task that they have always feared doing - but Kate gets to choose their task.

The premise behind this book sounded right up my alley. Unfortunately, I think the writing got in the way a little bit. The entire book was so lush and dripping with details, that it became more about the descriptions and less about the story or the characters. I found myself forgetting everything about the character from previous chapters due to the overwhelming descriptions. I also never really felt the fear behind the women who had to complete these particular tasks. Bauermeister's descriptions are extremely sensory and sensual and therefore didn't really translate the fear these women were feeling.

Having said that, there were stories in this book that I did find endearing, and it wasn't an unpleasant experience to listen to. I just wanted the author to tell their stories rather than bogging them down with so much description.
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