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Skipping a Beat

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  7,998 ratings  ·  852 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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Average rating 3.75  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,998 ratings  ·  852 reviews

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CoffeeBook Chick
Apr 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Feb 08, 2013 rated it did not like it
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
Mar 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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 company a ...more
Oct 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing 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
Melinda the Town Crackpot 🪴📚
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
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
Jul 16, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: abandoned
Self-absorbed and shallow characters - had to give it up one-quarter of the way through so that I could stop wishing them dead.
Jan 26, 2020 added it
Shelves: fiction, abandoned
I have been having an inauspicious 2020 book start :(
I’m half way in and cannot read another word about these self-absorbed characters. On to better reads!
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
Dec 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
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
Jan 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Christie Koester
Jun 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
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! ...more
Sarah Obsesses over Books & Cookies
I don't get all the good reviews. I hate the protagonist and just couldn't sympathize. at. all. ...more
Jan 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Aug 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing

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
Jan 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Reviewed for A Cozy Reader's Corner Reviews []

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
Jan 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: chick-lit
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
Jan 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Mar 08, 2011 rated it really liked it
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
Jul 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
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
May 31, 2011 rated it did not like it
I spent the first 200 pages being thoroughly annoyed with the protagonist. As soon as she started to show some redeeming qualities, the book wrapped up into a neat pat (too neat, too pat) little package. I was annoyed with Julia, annoyed with Michael, and annoyed with Isabelle. None of the characters seemed to learn much by the end of the book. And Isabelle felt much older than 35 to me. Both Isabelle and Julia did. They were written as old women. On the plus side, the book only took me a day to ...more
Dannalie Diaz
Jul 10, 2014 rated it it was ok
Started off well up until the guy drops "dead" at his board meeting (not a spoiler, it's part of the back copy). That's when I realized the narrator is kind of a horrible person, despite her motivations for her greed. Also saw the ending coming from a mile away, and I couldn't help but roll my eyes at it. This book was just meh. ...more
Mar 15, 2011 rated it did not like it
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 you're losing all of your money? Puleeaaassee, get over yourself. ...more
Michelle Lynne
Jan 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-loved
WOW!!!! This book was just amazing! From start to finish!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!
Mar 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: chick-lit, 2011
Really loved it until the last ten pages when it became a little trite. Reminded me a little of Emily Giffin.
Kimberly Russell
Sep 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: chick-lit
Geeze Louise this book was good. I dont want to give anything away - you should just read it. Like now.
Feb 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 05, 2017 rated it liked it
I read The Opposite of Me before this one. I hoped Skipping a Beat would have some of the same humor that it did. It never was on par with The Opposite of Me for holding my attention or striking my funny bone but it grew on me. I've enjoyed both books enough to check out her other titles.
Feb 03, 2020 rated it liked it
3 stars. Didn’t love this one, didn’t hate it. I actually have mixed feelings because I thought the basis of the storyline was good but then I was annoyed many times while reading it. I felt like several parts were dragging on and much of the book was just depressing. I had hoped the ending would go one way but it was not what I expected....I wasn’t happy with it. Overall this book was just meh. 😕
May 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
While I saw the ending of this story coming almost as soon as I started reading, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Julia and Michael's story intrigues me and their marital issues, once you took the money out of the equation, were completely relateable. This one definitely pulls at the heartstrings. ...more
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Sarah Pekkanen is also the co-author of the New York Times bestseller THE WIFE BETWEEN US and the upcoming AN ANONYMOUS GIRL, both cowritten with Greer Hendricks.

AN ANONYMOUS GIRL has been optioned for a television series by eOne, with Sarah and Greer executive producing. THE WIFE BETWEEN US has been optioned for film by Amblin Entertainment, with Sarah and Greer screenwriting the adaptation.

Her p

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