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Sleeping with Ward Cleaver Mass Market Paperback – February 1, 2008
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Somewhere along the line, Claire Doolittle’s handsome, carefree, exciting husband, Jack, turned into staid, solemn, know-it-all Ward Cleaver (of Leave It to Beaver fame). Claire and Jack’s life together is so dull and regimented that even sex is performed according to schedule—every Sunday night, come rain or shine. The lack of romance in her life begins eating away at Claire. She craves passion and desire. Enter “Todd the Bod,” an old flame. Claire is torn. Does she want an exciting love life badly enough to leave Jack? Should she fight or flee? In Gardiner’s emotionally realistic picture of a stale relationship, it’s easy for women to identify with Claire, from her physical midlife slump to her emotional one. And the resigned wife, the oblivious husband, and the enticing blast from the past are such well-crafted characters readers will swear they know them. Fans of such books as Cassandra King’s The Sunday Wife (2002) and Susan Wiggs’ The Ocean Between Us (2004) will enjoy Gardiner’s. --Shelley Mosley
"REVIEWER TOP PICK AND LIFETIME KEEPER! Jenny Gardiner brings to life Claire Doolittle with such vibrancy that I feel I know her. With her sharp wit and hilarious descriptions, Ms. Gardiner has a delightful voice that left me wanting more." -- Vee, Night Owl Romance
"The "Bridget Jones Diary" for all married and harried mommies! And perhaps a good gift to give to our younger and single girlfriends-it's a gentle and humorous way to give them a glimpse of what's to come . . . Sleeping With Ward Cleaver (is) the perfect romantic comedy for a 30-something Mommy, who still wants to be a sexy and sassy gal, despite the spit up encrusted on all of her clothing. I can only hope Rob Reiner and friends, will put this sassy book on the big screen!" -- MamaLit.com
"A fun, sassy read! A cross between Erma Bombeck and Candace Bushnell, reading Jenny Gardiner is like sinking your teeth into a big frosted chocolate cupcake...you just want more." -- Meg Cabot, author of the Princess Diaries, Queen of Babble, & the Heather Wells Mysteries
"Honest, real and wickedly funny, Sleeping with Ward Cleaver is a keeper!" -- Jane Porter, author of Flirting with Forty
"In this "woman's fiction," debut novelist Jenny Gardiner achieves the difficult, if not impossible, task of creating sexual and romantic tension between characters who have been married more than a few years. And they said it couldn't be done. The risk with writing about a married couple is how to sustain the conflict without getting shrill or soapy. Gardiner pulls it off. I wanted to see Jack and Claire fight for their marriage and their romance.
Armchair Interviews says: Sleeping with Ward Cleaver is a clever and engaging romance with humor and heart" -- Carrie Padgett, Armchair Interviews
Top customer reviews
I do not like to give away endings or even provide a spoiler in my reviews, I instead want to tell you why I loved this book. Afer a decade with a person, married or otherwise, we all begin to take things for granted. Perhaps the trips to the hair salon are stretched just a little longer. The dinner menu is repetative. The kids' bedtime routine is just that, a routine. Even our sex lives become mechanical and habitual. This is also the time when we need each other most. When life has taken over and we have lost who we once were. When the insecurities come to a boiling point and the ever so present "crap" becomes more than one can stand. Our poor Claire Doolittle reaches this point. And as always speculation, outside resources and plain ole fear take over and well you know what they say when you assume....
If you have ever felt overwhelmed, frustrated, rejected, ignored, insignificant, taken for granted and want to make a change before it is too late, read this book. You will laugh, cry and maybe feel like you have a friend in Claire Doolittle. She will inspire you to make the changes. Whether the changes are just throwing those damn sweats away or confronting your partner who has become more like your parent than partner, whatever the change is ... you will make one and you will know that putting yourself first and making yourself important again will show everyone around you that is the thing that needs to be done.
I like Jenny Gardiner and have read several of her novels. This was a fun read; however, she sometimes gets lost in her prose. A little bit of "creative" writing can go a long way in getting in the way of the story. There were times when I just got tired of the rambling reflections and "life inventories" going on and just wanted the story to move forward. That being said, the premise of the story was something that I think a lot of marriages go through and I liked the characters and found myself really wanting them to achieve the outcomes that were finally reached. Not her best but an okay read.
I can't thank her enough for writing such a light hearted, yet realistic glimpse into the transformations marriage and motherhood put us ladies through! This book was an absolute page turner, couldn't put it down! I read it in 1 day..with many interruptions from my Ward, Wally and Beave! Oh...loved the sly play on words at the end too!! Made me laugh out, totally something I would say!