book review: Fly Away Home

Title: Fly Away Home
Author: Jennifer Weiner
ISBN: 978-0743294270
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Atria (July 13, 2010)
Category: women’s fiction
Review source: publisher
Rating: 3/5

Fly Away Home by NYT’s best-selling author Jennifer Weiner revolves around the family patriarch, Senator Richard Woodruff, who has an affair with a younger staff member. The cheating Senator story has been told so many times recently in real life. His wife, Sylvie, after standing with him at the press conference where he speaks about his infidelity, leaves him but doesn’t divorce him. For once, I’d like the woman not to stand by her man. Or how about a story where the Senator cheats on HER HUSBAND. Sylvie and Richard have two adult daughters: Lizzie, a recovering drug addict and Diana, the seemingly perfect daughter, an emergency department doctor living in Philadelphia, married with one son. Diana’s having an affair with a younger guy, a resident at the hospital. He’s not that much younger but that’s irrelevant. I just couldn’t get past the episodes of unsafe sex. Yes, that’s right. No protection and she considers herself a responsible doctor and mother? Yikes! I have no problem with the affair as I know that some marriages grow stale or routine over time. I do have a problem, a gargantuan problem, with unsafe sex. When Lizzie gets pregnant from the one time she has sex with a guy she’s seeing, I almost stopped reading completely.

Except in all the examples she could think of, it was always the male docs who treated the hospital as their personal harem, never the ladies.

Fly Away Home gets told from the point of view of the two daughters, Diana and Lizzie, and their mother, Sylvie. Jennifer Weiner is a solid writer for the women’s fiction genre and I so wanted to be engulfed in this book. Unfortunately, I found all the characters to be selfish. Well, that’s not completely true. I really liked Lizzie until she got pregnant. [Oh, and the guy she’s dating, Jeff, says: “Is it safe?” before sex.] I never became invested into their futures or how they’d fix mistakes or make changes to their messed up lives. Can anyone ever write about condoms or emergency contraception? It’s no longer such a taboo subject. Or is it? I suppose many writers just don’t want to alienate their audiences in some way. Weiner has alienated me a bit. And I’ve been sour on women’s fiction/ chick lit for some time.

Buy from Amazon: Fly Away Home: A Novel

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