REVIEW: Through Thick and Thin by Alison Pace
Dear Ms. Pace,
Your first book “If Andy Warhol Had a Girlfriend” was one of my nice surprises for 2005. I didn’t read “Pug Hill” but when Jane told me we had a copy of Through Thick and Thin, I was game to try it.
These days, the Isley sisters’ sense of camaraderie isn’t what it used to be. They’re leading their own lives, with less in common every day. Stephanie is an overwhelmed stay-at-home mom with a handsome husband and a six-month-old baby. Meredith has a successful career as a New York restaurant critic, but her only future companion may be a yoga-loving dog. Sometimes it seems the only thing they still share is their mutual desire to lose weight.
So they decide to do it together, to turn back the clock to the slim self that Stephanie wants back and Meredith always wished for, and to the easy affection that once let them share everything. Only “everything” is harder now. Because neither sister has been completely honest about things that are very close to home…
After reading the back blurb, I was a little less game to read the book. Is the whole thing about weight loss? Thankfully not. The sisters each have things in their lives they want changed and which feel out of control to them. Stephanie’s perfect marriage isn’t so perfect as she finds out and Meredith has always had issues with her self-esteem. At the end of the book, I was glad to see Meredith seemingly embrace who she is and what she looks like while Stephanie and her not-so-perfect husband Aubrey make the decision that their marriage is worth the effort to keep. Meredith also looks like she might be on the right track for finding Mr Right. Not everything is cut and dried yet the signs for future happiness are there.
I did sometimes feel that Meredith and Stephanie think too darn much and over analyse too darn much. These parts really drag and were an effort to get through. I also knew that the solution to Aubrey’s problem wasn’t as easy as he first made it out to be but I think you did a realistic portrayal of what he was in store for.
The parts of the book that feature Meredith and her dog are delightful. I love that you include information about dog adoption but am sad that my chosen breed is the one that sets off DB Sweeny (and I have to say that I like his name sake better in Memphis Belle) — however, I hope that readers will know that dog ownership shouldn’t be an impulse decision (though the rightly charged $300 adoption fee ought to decrease snap decisions a bit). Though I like “Andy Warhol” better, this one still gets a B- from me.