From the publisher:
Among fake Instagram pages, long-buried family secrets, and the horrors of middle school, one suburban mom searches to find herself in a heartfelt and thought-provoking novel from the author of Minor Dramas and Other Catastrophes.
Alice Sullivan feels like she’s finally found her groove in middle age, but it only takes one moment for her perfectly curated life to unravel. On the same day she learns her daughter is struggling in second grade, a call from her son’s school accusing him of bullying throws Alice into a tailspin.
When it comes to light that the incident is part of a new behavior pattern for her son, one complete with fake social media profiles with a lot of questionable content, Alice’s social standing is quickly eroded to one of “those moms” who can’t control her kids. Soon she’s facing the very judgement she was all too happy to dole out when she thought no one was looking (or when she thought her house wasn’t made of glass).
Then her mother unloads a family secret she’s kept for more than thirty years, and Alice’s entire perception of herself is shattered.
As her son’s new reputation polarizes her friendships and her family buzzes with the ramification of her mother’s choices, Alice realizes that she’s been too focused on measuring her success and happiness by everyone else’s standards. Now, with all her shortcomings laid bare, she’ll have to figure out to whom to turn for help and decide who she really wants to be.
Suburban angst is at the center of this new novel by West (Minor Dramas and Other Catastrophes). The story centers around Alice Sullivan and the clique of moms who have been friends since their children were in kindergarten, but friendship is a tenuous thing here as the moms are all secretly judging one another.
As the children enter middle school things begin to change; the good girl isn’t quite as good, the good boy is acting out, and the bad boy is getting better. Social media is at the forefront here and is wreaking havoc over all these families.
Alice also has to deal with a boss who promised her a partnership and now seems to be pushing her out and her attorney husband is working a case that takes him out of town all week leaving her to deal with the kids, but it is her mother’s secret that is the final straw for Alice.
Verdict: First world problems abound here in this midwestern family saga, but West makes the most of her material. For readers who enjoyed The Gifted School by Bruce Holsinger, When Life Gives You Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger, and Separation Anxiety by Laura Zigman.
©Library Journal, 2021
3/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch
ARE WE THERE YET? by Kathleen West. Berkley (March 16, 2021). ISBN Berkley (March 16, 2021). 352 pages.
This entry was posted on Tuesday, March 16th, 2021 at 8:00 AM and is filed under Book Reviews, Fiction, Women's Fiction. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.