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Skipping a Beat: A Novel Paperback – February 22, 2011
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"A provocative, poignant look at marriage, money and the things that matter most." —Beth Kendrick, author of The Pre-Nup
"Original, engaging, and soulful, Skipping a Beat explores the complexity of marriage and what it really means to share a life. I fell in love with Julia, a funny, flawed and utterly real heroine—and felt the weight of her dilemma with every page, all the way through to the surprising, satisfying finish." —Emily Giffin, New York Times bestselling author of Something Borrowed and Heart of the Matter
"Tender and funny in turn, Sarah Pekkanen has made modern marriage exciting in this imaginative and heartfelt tale of love and healing." —Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus, #1 New York Times bestselling authors of The Nanny Diaries
"In her second novel, Pekkanen (The Opposite of Me) offers a wonderfully compelling, compassionate, and complicated portrait of the marriage of Julie and Michael Dunhill. Meeting in high school, the two were both determined to leave their hometown behind and make something of their lives, contrary to how they were raised. With Michael’s colossal and unpredicted financial success, these once loving sweethearts drift apart and find different foci for their passionate energies—Michael is completely absorbed in his DrinkUp company and Julie in her party-planning business. When Michael collapses on his office floor and dies for four minutes and eight seconds, their whole world changes, and both are left to reevaluate what they thought was important in life. For Julie though, this is a struggle to overcome the disappointment, sense of abandonment, and misunderstandings she’s harbored against her husband for years. VERDICT: In this compelling and satisfying read, Pekkanen offers relatable characters that move you and an ending that surprises and pleases. Highly recommended." —Library Journal, starred review
“A two-hanky weepy… A tragic turn of events redirects what could have been a predictable romance into a drama on the fragility of love and marriage.” —Kirkus
“An insightful examination of a marriage. The moving story and bittersweet ending will draw in readers” —Booklist
"This portrait of a couple forced to take responsibility for the breakdown of their relationship is at once heartbreaking and familiar." —People
“Intelligent and entertaining.” —The Washington Post
More About the Author
BIO: Sarah is the mother of three boys, which explains why she wrote part of her novel at Chuck E. Cheese. Seriously. Sarah penned her first book, Miscellaneous Tales and Poems, at the age of 10. When publishers failed to jump upon this literary masterpiece (hey, all the poems rhymed!) Sarah followed up by sending them a sternly-worded letter on Raggedy Ann stationery. Sarah still has that letter, and carries it to New York every time she has meetings with her publisher, as a reminder that dreams do come true. At least some dreams - Brad Pitt has yet to show up on her doorstep wearing nothing but a toolbelt and asking if she needs anything fixed. So maybe it's only G-rated dreams that come true. Please visit www.sarahpekkanen.com
Top Customer Reviews
Then a brush with death changes everything for Michael. Suddenly he sees more clearly what is important, and money becomes meaningless to him. Yet Julia gave up on love a long time ago and has grown accustomed to doing things alone and living the high life. Now it looks like Michael wants to turn his back on it all, give it all up and put his full attention on Julia.
Julia feels that it too little....
Honestly? I loved this book even more than her first! I connected well with the characters of Julia and Michael and found that these two well-developed characters left me feeling like the best friend in the middle.Read more ›
I will first admit that I LOVE chick lit. Love it! However, after a while the books written in that genre do tend to follow a formula. Nice, yet quirky girl discovers: a) her husband is a cheater and plans to leave her for a younger bimbo, b) she loses her job through no fault of her own, or c) she realizes that she is nearing some big milestone (30th birthday or similar) and discovers that she forgot to grow up. Then various mishaps unfold until the girl finds a happy ending.
You need to know that this book is not like that at all. Instead of a cartoonish main female character, a kooky best friend, and a one dimensional love interest you get real characters that you care about. I love the nuances of these characters, flaws and all. The author has created a story of marriage, drifting apart, staying together out of convenience and regret that is spun so beautifully that by the end of the book you will be bleeding for these characters.
If I had one little piece of criticism it would be that the end wrapped up everything up in a tight red bow. Though I suppose if it hadn't I would have been bitterly disappointed. I had a very satisfying and ugly cry that only a truly excellent book can give you.
Honestly there were times I thought I would put the book down. Julia would seem a little childish but then Ms. Pekkanen would delve into the whys of her actions and thoughts and then I understood Julia so much more. I think every woman will find some of herself in Julia, whether it has to do with marriage or relationship with family members or just trying to get ahead. Julia turns out to be a remarkable character who grows through the book and learns to let go. I enjoyed watching her journey and really felt for her at times. Anyone who is married knows there are always rocky times and you both have to work to make it last. Ms. Pekkanen does a wonderful job of showing this yet showing that sometimes it's better not to give up.
Michael was fascinating and it's not until later in the book that you really get into his motivations as well and you begin to understand the whys of what he is doing. I think the author did a magnificent job of layering the plot so we pulled away layer by layer to see how the characters would develop next.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It's been a long time since a book moved me this much. I wasn't expecting anything particular and was stunned by what I received. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Carol
It's another great story from Sarah Pekkanen, who has the gift of a wonderful imagination. Her characters come to life, as though we were there with them.Published 11 days ago by mpdwayne
I ordered this through the library via my kindle as it was highly rated on 'chicklitclub.com.' Unfortunately, I just couldn't identify with the book; I wasn't crazy about any of... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
This book was very well written. The author's style is conversational. The story kept me engaged and it took my emotions on a ride.Published 3 months ago by Bailey A Lathem
Wow! Amazing book, the way this author writes takes you right out of your world & into hers. So much for going to bed early & reading myself to sleep-- I had to read the whole... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Robin S. Welch
Julia and Michael are slipping away from each other--but is it the gradual (yet sometimes jarring) incidents from their past or Michael's near-death experience that really throws... Read morePublished 6 months ago by soccerjude