Days of Awe

Finished Days of Awe by Lauren Fox.

Summary (from Goodreads):

The celebrated author of Friends Like Us now gives us a raw, achingly funny novel about a woman who, after the death of her best friend, must face the crisis in her marriage, the fury of her almost-teenage daughter, and the possibility that she might open her cantankerous heart to someone new.

Only a year ago Isabel Moore was married, the object of adoration of her ten-year-old daughter, and thought she knew everything about her wild, extravagant, beloved best friend, Josie. But in that one short year: her husband moved out and rented his own apartment; her daughter grew into a moody insomniac; and Josie — impulsive, funny, secretive Josie — was killed behind the wheel in a single-car accident. As Isabel tries to make sense of this shattering loss and unravel the months leading up to Josie’s death, she comes to understand the shifts, large and small, that can upend a friendship and an entire life. Heartbreaking and wryly funny, Days of Awe is a masterly exploration of marriage, motherhood, and the often surprising shape of new love.”

I am really drawn to books about grieving and books about friendship.  When I heard about this book, one that is about both? YES PLEASE TAKE MY MONEY.

It read like a conversation with a stranger and I think those can go one of two ways.  The first is that you learn everything, because you’ll never see that person again.  It’s super-intimate and tends to get that way really fast.  The other way keeps you at a remove because you ARE a stranger and it means you have no context.

Days of Awe read more like the second one.

That’s not necessarily a criticism.  I enjoyed Days of Awe and liked Isabel.  I wanted her to be happy (and for her daughter, Hannah, to stop being a brat) and neither of us knew if she could make it.

I just didn’t enjoy it as much as I would have if I had understood her and her motives a little more.  (It’s 256 pages; this may be part of it.)

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