It didn’t take me long to make my way through The Solomon Sisters Wise Up by Melissa Senate — in my opinion, this is “chick lit” at its finest! I bought Senate’s Questions to Ask Before Marrying on a whim last year and loved her writing style. I mooched this one and definitely wasn’t disappointed!
Sisters Sarah and Ally are both at turning major points in their lives — Sarah finds herself pregnant by a man she cares for but has only been dating a few months, and Ally catches her lying, cheating bastard of a husband in quite the compromising position — with her own yoga teacher. Youngest half sister Zoe, who shares Bartholomew Solomon as a father with Sarah and Ally, is the Dating Diva of Los Angeles, but struggles to iron our her own floundering love life when she discovers her own boyfriend on a blind date with a client. And there’s the tiny, insignificant little problem of Zoe’s 26-year-old former friend marrying Bart Solomon, their father twice her age. All three girls wind up in the small guest room of Bart’s New York City penthouse, sharing cots pushed together like summer camp.
The Solomon Sisters Wise Up isn’t bogged down by all this drama, though. I loved Sarah’s character the most, watching as she pours over book after book on pregnancy and struggles to get ex-boyfriend Griffen involved in their future child. Ally realizes she was caught in a loveless marriage and is able to move on once she decides she will not play the victim in this trial. Zoe begins to realize that though she’s paid two hundred plus a night to sit and tell men and women what they’re doing “wrong” on dates, some folks just aren’t compatible — and we don’t really have to change for anyone.
All the sisters do change, though — irrevocably. They become close. They all share a movie producer father who has spent his entire life, and career, being selfish — but Ally, Sarah and Zoe begin to realize that not everything is as it seems with Bart, either. Ultimately, they begin to reconcile the past with the future, grow closer together and become the support system for one another they so desperately crave — and romantic love, though desirable, isn’t the end-all, be-all.
Generally, I find Melissa Senate’s work to be a little more empowering than most chick lit, where it seems that women must find that “perfect guy” who completes them to be happy and successful. Her novel focuses on the professional struggles of the sisters as much as the personal struggles, and I found that refreshing. Senate also touches on singlehood, motherhood, parenthood and sisterhood in a way that does not feel contrived or disingenuous.
In short, I loved it! If you’re a fan of women’s fiction and need a quick read, grab up Melissa Senate right away — you won’t be disappointed.
4 out of 5!