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Back in the Game Mass Market Paperback – June 1, 2007


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington (June 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0758216521
  • ISBN-13: 978-0758216526
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 1.1 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,723,985 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I live in Portland, Maine, with my husband Stephen (architect, photographer, and food writer) and our amazingly fabulous cats Betty and Cyrus. When I'm not writing, I usually can be found with my head in a book. I try to read widely; still, I do play favorites with authors such as Peter Ackroyd and Patrick McGrath.

I was born and grew up in the Bronx and later lived in Brooklyn and Manhattan. I earned an undergraduate and graduate degree in English Literature at New York University before going on to work for about twelve years as an editor in publishing and packaging at Ballantine Books, Daniel Weiss Associates, Inc., and Kensington Publishing Corporation. Mostly I developed, acquired and edited projects, usually fiction, in Adult, Young Adult, and Middle Grade categories.

In 1996, I moved to Boston and began freelance editing, ghost writing, and reviewing manuscripts. I was a can-do wordsmith for hire, grinding out books on everything from the importance of shark liver oil in one's diet to feng shui for the amateur; I also worked on what seemed like a million Young Adult series installments. Eventually I decided I'd rather work on my own projects so I made a proposal to my old friend and colleague John Scognamiglio at Kensington. After a couple of false starts he signed me up to write "Living Single," which was published in 2002. Since then I've been writing one novel a year, and I've also contributed novellas to three collections John put together.

In terms of life outside reading and writing, Stephen and I recently updated an 1865 brick townhouse in downtown Portland and we love living in this old seaside town. We entertain a good bit -- Stephen cooks, I set a nice table and clean up afterwards. We're happy to live in an area so full of people who support the arts. Portland itself is alive with theatre and music, and it's the home of several museums, including the impressive Portland Museum of Art, and good independent bookstores catering to serious readers.

What's new? I'm working on another book set in Ogunquit, Maine. This story involves two women - Delphine from Ogunquit and Maggie "from away" - who met as children and became fast friends. But after college, well, very different lives beckoned and at the time we meet the women, they haven't seen each other in over twenty years. For a variety of reasons, Maggie is eager for a revival of their old friendship, but for a variety of other reasons, Delphine is not. What happens to these women over the course of the book? I'm finding out more each day!

Customer Reviews

It was "okay" but not something I'd want to read again.
Tracy
That way, the reader could have made up their own mind about whether or not we like Laura as a character instead of having it decided for us.
Danielle
After I thought about it a while her character was really poorly used.
Peeved in Portland

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Danielle VINE VOICE on October 14, 2006
Format: Paperback
I really had a hard time deciding how many stars to give "Back in the game". There were times that I was reading this book and liked it and was interested in knowing on where it was going to go but there were other times where I was really annoyed about the characters and what the author had them do. Each women in "Back in the game" has their flaws and things that will most likely annoy you. But no character will annoy you more than Laura. I'm sure that this is what Holly Chamberlin wanted. The last reviewer, Gabrielle, made some interesting points about the character of Laura. A lot of things, like her breakdown after her and Nell's parents died, were skimmed over. Maybe going more in-depth about that time in Laura's life would make us understand Laura a little bit better and perhaps she wouldn't feel so shallow to us. That way, the reader could have made up their own mind about whether or not we like Laura as a character instead of having it decided for us.

The book,in a way, just seemed uneven. Kind of like Holly Chamberlin couldn't decide what the tone of the novel should be. For most of the book, at the beginning of each chapter, a quote from made-up self-help books was given and they were all so anti-marriage.

This is my first Holly Chamberlin novel but I bought "Living Single" as I started to read "Back in the game". I'm hoping that "Living Single" is a better book than this one. "Back in the game" isn't the worst book I've read but it's also not the best.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer L. on February 27, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read Babyland by Holly Chamberlin and hated it because all of the characters were so unlikable and shallow. But "Back in the Game" definitely struck a nerve, mainly because the author doesn't hold back in illustrating the world of divorce and what it's like to "be back out there" and dating in your 30s and 40s. Sometimes the book is so brutally honest you cringe reading it, but I couldn't put it down. Also, the author makes a point of not tying everything up in a neat bow; not all of the characters end up happy or with a man at the end of the novel and I think it made the book stronger and more memorable.
I enjoyed the character of Grace the best. I've known leeches like her ex-husband, and despite Simon's way-out personality, men like him do exist. Like other reviewers, I couldn't stand Laura, mainly because it was hard to believe she was a bona fide adult, she was just so dense and childlike in her approach to life. She wasn't necessarily a nice person, either, so you don't always feel sorry for her. Jess, on the other hand, was the least interesting...she keeps wondering why she married her football-obsessed husband and the author never answers that question. Perhaps that was Chamberlin's intent--and why this novel will stay with you for a long time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By horselover374 on April 29, 2013
Format: Paperback
One star was too many. I HATED this book! The characters were supposed to be deep and were fluffy and superficial. The sister dynamic was so off and the older sister was so mean to the younger sister that you wondered if this is how the author's relationship with her sister was. I finished the book last night and woke up annoyed at the book.
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Format: Paperback
BACK IN THE GAME Holly Chamberlin
I enjoy reading Holly's works and this is another good one.
Starts out with alternating chapters of four women who are getting or going through a divorce.
They share their triumphs and days of misery with each other and some even find online or group sessions to help them over the problems that arise.
Also at the beginning of every chapter are tips or quotes from other publications about divorce.
One man turned gay, another had his wife cheat on him, another wants a baby and he doesn't and another has found his own true love.
Their life's go through the dating scene again and what they find and how they cope with it all.
I did find with the very short alternating chapters (some are long chapters) it was hard to follow each of them and keep them straight as to who was who.
Love the locale and descriptions of the Boston area...
References to Sex and The City are made and you can see the connection. Love how it all ends up where everything is tied together in harmony.
Excerpts of The Summer Everything Changed is included at the end of the book.
I received this book from The Kennsington Books in exchange for my honest review.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I picked up this book at my local thrift shop for 10 cents and I'm glad I didn't pay more for it. The four women who are the main characters are not likeable in the least. They are mean, stupid, clueless, and/or passive/aggressive. Nell has a horrible relationship with her younger sister, Laura, and her treatment of Laura borders on cruel. Granted, Laura is a total dimwit, but still...
This book hates men, hates marriage, and doesn't like children too much, either. I couldn't wait to finish the thing so I could throw it away. I even hate the cover picture. Most of the book does not deal with happy couples relaxing on a beach. In fact, only about the last 1/8 of the book even mentions a beach. Ugh.
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By Tracy on March 13, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this book for my monthly book club. I was a bit disappointed with it, as I expected it to be more lighthearted. It was "okay" but not something I'd want to read again.
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