Saturday, November 20, 2010

Review: The Season of Second Chances by Diane Meier

Author: Diane Meier

Genre: Women's Fiction

About (from Diane Meier's Website):  
A world of possibilities opens up for Joy Harkness when she sets out on a journey that’s going to show her the importance of friendship, love, and what makes a house a home

Coming-of-age can happen at any age. Joy Harkness had built a university career and a safe life in New York, protected and insulated from the intrusions and involvements of other people. When offered a position at Amherst College, she impulsively leaves the city, and along with generations of material belongings, she packs her equally heavy emotional baggage. A tumbledown Victorian house proves an unlikely choice for a woman whose family heirlooms have been boxed away for years. Nevertheless, this white elephant becomes the home that changes Joy forever. As the restoration begins to take shape, so does her outlook on life, and the choices she makes over paint chips, wallpaper samples, and floorboards are reflected in her connection to the co-workers who become friends and friendships that deepen. A brilliant, quirky, town fixture of a handyman guides the renovation of the house and sparks Joy’s interest to encourage his personal and professional growth. Amid the half-wanted attention of the campus’s single, middle-aged men, known as “the Coyotes,”and the legitimate dramas of her close-knit community, Joy learns that the key to the affection of family and friends is being worthy of it, and most important, that second chances are waiting to be discovered within us all.
My Thoughts:
This is a beautiful coming-of-age novel and I loved that the author chose a woman in her 40's to feature as we follow this process as a reader. Actually Joy is 48, which is my age, but that is where the similarities end for the most part. Joy has never found true love or family and friends to connect to until she takes a chance on starting a new life in Amherst, Massachusetts. She takes on a new job as a professor and buys a run down Victorian house that she is drawn to. She learns that making decisions on impulse can be quite fun and gratifying and more rewarding than never making choices or avoiding them. I enjoyed reading about the quaint New England town of Amherst and the strong characters that all grow and learn as the events in their lives change. Reading about the restoration of Joy's Victorian home by Teddy was interesting from choosing the wallpaper and paint to the trust Joy must place in him. Their relationship is a quirky one but one that allows them both to change and grow as adults. Joy learns to trust others as well as herself and she learns what true friendship truly is about.

Recommend?: Absolutely! Especially if you enjoy women's fiction with characters that are strong and likeable, a wonderful setting and strong writing style.

Source: Thanks to Leah Holt, Publicist for sending me a copy of this book to review. 

About the Author: Diane Meier:

Marketing guru, author of The New American Wedding and president of MEIER, a NYC based marketing firm whose clients have helped define luxury marketing (from Neiman Marcus and DeBeers to Maximilan Furs, Kohler, Elizabeth Arden and Pierre Balmain).

Her career has honed skills from strategy, writing and design to public speaking. Married to best selling author and BBC broadcaster, Frank Delaney, she has had much to observe about writing and speaking - from a front row seat.

Visit Diane's website for more information.


  1. This does sound good. I like to read books with more mature women as well.

  2. This is one that I've read quite a few great reviews on and have been wanting to read it. Loved your thoughts!

  3. Bonnie, thanks for this wonderful review! Sounds like a great read.

  4. I read this earlier in the year and really enjoyed it. Nice review, Bonnie :-)

  5. I hadn't heard of this one, it sounds really good! Thanks!

  6. Wonderful review! This does sound like one most women would enjoy. You know I have a friend much like this Joy character. My friend is in her early 40's now and never been intimate with anyone. She would probably connect really well to this book!

  7. I read this one too and thought it was pretty good.

  8. I've had a copy of this forever and everyone says great things about it, I really need to get to it!


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