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The Whole Package

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  212 Ratings  ·  47 Reviews
It's a man's world-but in this outrageous debut, the girls aren't playing by the rules.

For lifelong friends Jackie, Cheryl, and Doris, life hasn't turned out according to plan. But after a drunken night sampling the delights at a strip club for women, the ladies stumble upon an ingenious idea and open up The Whole Package-the world's first restaurant staffed exclusively
Paperback, 416 pages
Published August 2nd 2011 by Berkley Trade (first published 2011)
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Cynthia Ellingsen
Apr 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
I'm a little biased, but I'm a fan!
Samantha March
Aug 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Three friends have lost it all. Doris finds out her husband is having an affair, Cheryl lost her fantastic job, and Jackie is poor after her husband passes away and leaves her with debt. When the three high school friends get together once again, now in their forties, they feel like everything is crashing around them. When they get an idea to reclaim their lives, their independence, and their happiness, it comes in the form of an unexpected business venture- a restaurant. But not just any old re ...more
Tara Chevrestt
Aug 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011-release
What a great idea... and one that many of us women would whole heartily endorse: a "Hooters" for women, a restaurant where women can go and be served delectable dishes by scantily dressed men and see a strip show every 15 minutes.

And that is what Jackie, Cheryl, and Doris set out to do. The BFFs start a restaurant together, The Whole Package. Whether their business survives or fails is up to them. And while interviewing sexy models, shopping with gay men, and dealing with picketers, each woman i
Aug 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
Three longtime best friends ... three lives in shambles ... an opportunity to rebuild their lives together ...

Jackie, Cheryl and Doris have been longtime best friends through thick and thin. When each of their lives takes a downward turn, they come together at the age of forty to pick themselves up off the floor and rebuild their lives together.

Jackie had married into money, and when her husband Robert died, she took off for Paris to become an artist. After living the glamorous Parisian high soc
Nov 28, 2012 rated it liked it
Tre donne, tre catastrofi in arrivo, e un sogno da realizzare. Amori Impossibili e Fragole con Panna è il nuovo frizzante romanzo targato Newton Compton dell' autrice Cynthia Ellingsen. E' una commedia divertente e leggera che narra la storia di tre amiche, Doris, Jackie e Cheryl, alle prese rispettivamente con guai matrimoniali, economici e lavorativi. Ormai varcata la soglia dei 40 anni, Cheryl, si ritrova improvvisamente senza lavoro. Jackie, dopo la mo
Aug 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anna Giovane Reader
"Amori impossibili e fragole con panna" è un romanzo che tratta il tema dell'amicizia, sia quella sempre esistita che quella ritrovata. Tuttavia è anche un romanzo in cui si fanno i conti con il tempo che passa, volente o nolente.
Le tre protagoniste, Doris, Jackie e Cheryl, si conoscono dai tempi del liceo e alla soglia dei quaranta anni sono pronte a raccontarsi. Un terzetto di cuori spezzati, teste rotte e sogni infranti.
Doris è la classica piagnona, una donna dotata di poco carattere e poco p
Feb 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Three friends, Cheryl, Jackie, and Doris are going through trials and tribulations in their personal lives and need something new. When they go to a strip club following man troubles, they decide what their town needs is a male version of Hooters. This story follows their personal troubles and the opening of their new restaurant.

I was very impressed with this book. The author developed strong characters with human characteristics, both good and bad. The three friends are by no means perfect whic
Jac (For Love and Books)
Aug 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
I wasn't sure what to expect when I picked up this book, but I really loved it! It took me about two evenings to read - despite being insanely busy last week!

I loved the friendship between Jackie, Cheryl and Doris! (It's rare to share my name with a character in a book, so I was partial to Jackie from the beginning!) I have a set of girlfriends who I have been close with since elementary school, so it was easy for me to picture us in the lead roles a little later in life!

I loved the journey th
Feb 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads, owned
Thoroughly enjoyed this funny story of three high school girls who grow into women full of hope to make all their lives what they dreamed it could be. Dissolved relationships, failed business ventures and their ingenious idea to open a "women's restaurant" - one staffed exclusive with very attractive men - lead these women down the path of risky pleasures and the possibility of their friendship dying right along with their business. Fast-paced, couldn't put it down; a wonderful read for a woman ...more
Feb 23, 2013 rated it did not like it
Il libro è una mezza rottura di palle e non vale nemmeno la pena star qui a raccontare la rava e la fava. Però su Goodreads non c'era e, non avendo voglia di inserire il libro, l'ho inserito in inglese.

Qualcuno mi deve spiegare come "The Whole Package" possa essere diventato "Amori impossibili e fragole con panna". No, non ce la faccio a capire. Non capisco manco che centrino le fragole con panna.
Feb 17, 2012 rated it liked it
I love books about old friends that explore not only their relationship with each other, but also their relationships with others in their lives. This book had all that. Three 40ish women, long-time friends with various major events going on in their lives, go into business together ina totally unexpected way. I enjoyed this book.
Sep 01, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: female-friends
I thought the characters in this book would be more interesting than the twenty-somethings that populate chick-lit but, unfortunately they were just clueless forty-somethings. The friendship between the three main characters was the strongest part of the story.
Mar 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: friends, fans of chit-lit / romance
Shelves: gr-giveaways, 2013
I won this book through a Goodreads Giveaway. This was a great story of friendship, loyalty, and the difficulties of relationships. It was a nice, easy read. Only thing was the ending was a little predictable. Saying that, it didn't really take away from the rest of the book.
Aug 28, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a perfect little beach read. Sweet, fun, relatable characters. There was one tiny little disappointment at the end (or at least I think it was, it wasn't totally clear what happened), but otherwise a very fun book.
Nov 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A great read and a great story about friendship. And yes, the idea is brilliant. But this book goes beyond a brilliant catchy idea. The friendship between these three women is tested, and as a result I can't help putting down the book and calling up my bffs just to say "I love you."
Feb 25, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: winning
I won this from a Goodreads giveaway. I usually dont like books that have multiple main characters but the balance between these women worked together nicely. I actually liked all of the characters equally. This is a fun, quick read. I may have given it 3.5 stars if that were an option.
Mar 12, 2012 marked it as to-read
An old friend of mine from high school wrote this. The reviews look good. I guess I will need to track down a copy.
Mar 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Cute. Fun read.
Feb 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
I received this book free from the Goodreads giveaway. I loved this book. It is about time someone came up with this idea. Can't let the men have all the fun.
Sep 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: contemporary
Funny, sweet, and sassy! And cinematic -- I can see the movie now!
Sep 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance
This was a fun book to read. Loved how Cheryl(my fav), Jackie and Doris were introduced to the reader.
The storyline is a fun and orginal idea.
Sep 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
What a fun book! Definitely a good book for a book club or vacation! Thanks Cynthia - cant wait to see what's next!
Aug 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
It’s a man’s word, but in Cynthia Ellingsen’s debut novel, “The Whole Package,” these girls aren’t playing by the rules.

Ever since high school Jackie, Doris and Cheryl have been the closest of friends. Now, 40 years later, they reunite, and life has not turned out the way they planned. After Jackie’s husband dies, she takes off to Paris to restart her artist career. When she gets a call from George, her husband’s lawyer, saying all of her husband’s money has been depleted, she returns home, bro
Dec 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: adult-fiction, 2012
3.5 stars. Jackie, Cheryl, and Doris are longtime friends whose lives haven't exactly turned out as planned. Jackie's discovered that she's broke because of her late husband's financial decisions; Cheryl's worked hard to rise to the top at work, but a devious coworker has ruined this; and Doris is dealing with a bratty teenaged daughter and a husband going through a midlife crisis. The three of them decide to go into business together, opening up a Hooters-ish restaurant catering to women, where ...more
Laura Kay Bolin
Jul 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Money problems? Love life in the dumps? Just lost your job? Then sit back and relax with Jackie, Cheryl and Doris in The Whole Package. These three fantastic ladies know exactly how you feel, but these are not just any three ladies, no. These three are best friends who are not about to let life kick them to the curb, they are going to show the world how women roar!

Jackie was the beautiful and popular high school cheerleader who married a man she loved who happened to have tons of money. But afte
Feb 16, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was disappointed in this book. Too light and fluffy for me.
Jan 19, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abbandonato
Okay, a volte anche io ho voglia di leggere qualcosa di stupidamente dolce e stupido, ma questo è demenziale. Mi rendo conto che non faccio parte del target a cui pensava la scrittrice, ma poverette le donne di mezz'età in crisi esistenziale che invece sono il target per questo libro. Se devono leggere roba così sono proprio messe male. Cosa mi ha attirato di questo libro? Sarò sincera, la copertina. Mi piace molto. Quando si dice l'abito non fa il monaco...
Jan 31, 2013 rated it it was ok
Il titolo italiano "Amori impossibili, fragole con panna" non centra assolutamente nulla con il libro.
Tre donne , tre amiche alle prese con un ristorante per sole donne con camerieri poco vestiti. Un marito traditore, un collega sexy e l'amico del marito morto. Banalità dopo banalità il libro scorre abbastanza ma non mi ha colpito...
Aug 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bookclub-read
Loved it. It was a fun read, with a great mix of characters that we can all relate to from characters in our own life. There were times I cheered for them and other times saddened by their mistakes, but in the end they triumphed as a group of friends but more importantly in finding their own strength. Inspiring for women today!
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What was your favorite scene in this book? 1 5 Aug 27, 2011 12:58PM  
The Whole Package 1 4 Aug 03, 2011 02:30PM  
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