Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakthrough by Ruth Pennebaker

Summary ~ Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakthrough: Joanie’s ex-husband is having a baby with his new girlfriend. Joanie won’t be having more babies, since she’s decided never to have sex again.

But she still has her teenaged daughter Caroline to care for. And thanks to the recession, her elderly mother Ivy as well. Her daughter can’t seem to exist without texting, and her mother brags about “goggling,”-while Joanie, back in the workforce, is still trying to figure out her office computer. And how to fend off the advances of her coworker Bruce.

Joanie, Caroline, and Ivy are stuck under the same roof, and it isn’t easy. But sometimes they surprise each other-and themselves. And through their differences they learn that it is possible to undo the mistakes of the past.

Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakthrough by Ruth Pennebaker is a novel that is relevant in ways to the world we are living in today.  There are three generations of women living under one roof.  Daughter, Mother/Daughter, Grandmother/Mother.  That is not always a good combination and in this book that proves true.  Ivy, the grandmother, looses half her and her deceased husband’s savings in the market crash of ’08 and finds herself in a situation she never dreamed of.  Having to move in with her forty-nine year old daughter Joanie and her fifteen year old granddaughter Caroline.  Ivy is a challenging new roommate for both of them and eventually is diagnosed with depression.  Joanie is trying to make ends meet as she takes a job that she ends up resenting and tries to mother a bratty, disrespectful teenager and take care of her aging mother.  The book is laden with dark clouds of emotion, anger, disrespect and all-together unlikable characters in my opinion.  I prefer a book to entertain me and/or provide something new to learn about.  This did neither for me.  The character development was good enough but the story lines and how these characters conducted themselves with each other did not make for a worthwhile read in my opinion. 

Maybe I would have enjoyed this book at another point in my life but right now it just wasn’t for me.  I would like to thank Tolly & Penguin Books for inviting me to read and review Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakthrough.  It never hurts to say yes!

{Rating 2 out of 5}

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