Lost in the lush, comfortable world of shopping-as-sport, suburban mom, wife and interior designer Kat Griffiths is about to get one serious reality check on the world of consumerism, wants and needs. When Kat digs into her family’s finances for the first time in her life, she can’t believe how bad the damage has become.
Her lackadaisical attitude toward spending — and Griff’s insistence that she not touch the checking accounts herself — has drained the family and left very little for their teen daughter Laura’s college education. After Kat discovers a bank account Griff has started and kept secret from her, her fears and suspicions reach a fever pitch: it’s time to take action.
At the insistence of her friend and housekeeper, Kat joins the Penny Pinchers Club — a motley crew of folks who meet in the public library to discuss coupons, cutting down on consumption, going green and basically living more thoughtfully. The tips she gleans from her meetings help her out in all sorts of ways . . . and prompt her to take a good, hard look at her own life’s needs . . . and wants. Especially where love is concerned.
There’s really so much to love about Sarah Strohmeyer’s The Penny Pinchers Club — it was funny but had plenty of heart; was light-hearted without being cheesy; felt realistic but not depressing. Though I knew from the get-go that some of the “secrets” couldn’t possibly be true, I didn’t have too much trouble going along with it . . . though I did keep thinking Kat would wake up concerning a few matters! It took a while before that happened.
I loved so many of the auxiliary characters, especially Kat’s sister Viv and Steve. The Penny Pinchers themselves were really fun, sweet people, and I loved learning about their lives and how they’d come to be so cost-effective! And the appearance of an old flame added a lot of depth to the plot.
I really felt for Kat, a realistic main character I adored rooting for. The conflict between the many spheres in which she resides — spender and saver; wife and ex-girlfriend; mom and worker — added depth to what might have otherwise been a pretty ordinary story. A quick and worthy read!
4 out of 5!