Hope in a Jar by Beth Harbison

I decided the best way to spend Sunday afternoon was to make a stop at Half Price Books. I walked out with 3 books and Hope in a Jar was one of the three. I’ve never read anything by Beth Harbison but the title let me know it would be an easy read and chick lit.

Unlike Paris by Edward Rutherfurd, the jumping back and forth between present day and the characters’ teenage years was easily to follow. It’s the story of two best friends that have a falling out halfway through their senior year of high school. It isn’t until almost the end of the book the reader learns the cause of the fight. I had an idea of what might have caused the problem and I was close but it was more surprising than I expected.

The characters are two dimensional but with a chick lit book I didn’t expect deep , multi-layered characters. The tried and true story of girlfriends who trade places. Allie going from pretty and popular to overweight and unhappy, while Olivia transforms from a quiet mouse into a beautiful magazine executive. Their common thread is at 38 they are both unhappy and dread their 20th high school reunion.

What resonated with me was the fact that both characters finally realize if they want their lives to be different, no one can change their lives except themselves. That is where I am in my own life. I am trying to make simple changes and move forward.

If you want a book that will give you a few hours of enjoyment with no lingering after effect, this book is for you.


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