Monday, April 2, 2012

CBR4 #13 - Four of a Kind - Valerie Frankel

Besides the fact that their kids all attend the same fashionable Brooklyn Heights private school, Bess, Robin, Carla, and Alicia have little in common. Thrown together on the tony school’s Diversity Committee, the women impulsively turn their awkward first meeting into a boisterous game of poker. Instead of betting with chips or pocket change, however, they play for intimate secrets about their lives.

As the Diversity Commitee meetings become a highly anticipated monthly ritual, the new friends reveal more with each game. Picture-perfect housewife Bess struggles to relate to her surly teenage daughter and judgmental mother. Robin, a single mom, grapples with the truth concerning her child’s real father. Carla, an ambitious doctor, attempts to balance the colossal demands of her family with her dream of owning her own private practice. And to distract herself from her troubled marriage, shy copywriter Alicia fantasizes about an attractive younger colleague.

Putting all their cards on the table, the four women grow to rely on one another, bracing for one final showdown.
Received a copy of this book from Random House's Reading Group

What happens when you put four women together to start a Diversity Club at their children's school? In Frankel's story, the four mothers start a poker game and share secrets from their life.  Slowly a bond between the mothers starts and they find themselves becoming "attached" to each other more than they expected.

The life events that appeared within the story did represent every day events that could happen.  In a way, it seemed that these mothers could handle any situation that came their way, which may or may not be realistic. I did appreciate the spontaneity of the Atlantic City trip and how they each approached real poker games differently.

I didn't realize until the end of the book that there was a glossary of poker terms in the back.  If you aren't aware of how to play Texas Hold'em, that glossary would be helpful.  I enjoyed how that game was intertwined in the book, as I learned the game myself by watching a few too many episodes of Celebrity Poker. 

There was an intriguing subplot of wealth and if money makes you happy.  I was surprised by the generosity of Bess versus the rationalization of Carla as she decided to buy a lottery ticket or not. The multiple narrators worked well for this book, as the reader gets to "know" each woman by her style and personality. 

Overall this book is a great beach read and reminded me of another book I read The Other Mothers' Club.

No comments:

Post a Comment