Getting To Happy: Transitions [SPOILERS]

BlogHer Review

In her book Getting to Happy, Terry McMillan brings back her characters from Waiting to Exhale, but don't let the fact that this is a sequel turn you away from it. I very vaguely remember reading the first book, never saw the movie made from it, and I still enjoyed this book tremendously.

These four women are all hitting their half-century mark, a time when they thought they should have it all figured out. However, through death and divorce, addiction and unemployment, they are all in a position of trying one more time to figure out what shape their lives are going to take. It is a time of transition for all of them, and reading how they react to their circumstances is enlightening.

The most fascinating thing about this book is that while all four women are vastly different and the experiences they have are equally so, I found pieces of myself in all of them. Savannah's discovery that her husband is no longer someone she recognizes and Bernadine's unwillingness to let go of her anger and resentment toward her ex-husband both resonated with me on a very intimate level, having experience both of those myself. Terry McMillan wrote some of the exact things I have felt, and it was liberating to know that some feeling are simply universal. Gloria deals with her husband's death by packing on some weight and letting her mail pile up while Robin handles losing her job by shopping-and what woman among us hasn't dealt (or NOT dealt) with life in precisely the same manner at times?

I left this book feeling a kinship not just with the women in the book but with women everywhere. We all have so much on our plates on a day to day basis, all of us have transitions and tragedies and drama, and really, aren't we all just trying to do what these women are? Just trying to figure out how to "get back to happy," or find it if we have never had it before. For this reason alone, I think this is a must read for every woman who is facing the future and not certain what shape it might take.

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