Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Review: The Cougar Club (TLC Tours)

The Cougar Club by Susan McBride
Publisher: Avon
Release: February 1, 2010
Format: Paperback
Pages: 320
My Review: 

Rating: 9.0/10.0
The Cougar Club is an absolutely delightful book.  I was pulled into the lives of Kat, Carla and Elise from the very first page and by the end of the book I felt like they were my friends.  That's how well I felt I got to know them.

It's funny going from reading a lot of young adult novels to one about more mature women (which incidentally are only slightly older than me - and I'm feeling it since my birthday is Friday).  But truly there is little difference between teenage girls and older women, mainly the age and some maturity level.  Essentially though all women love men, great shoes and friends.  That is the epitome of Kat, Carla and Elise who are there for each other in some tough times.  Coming back together after quite a few years, these three high school friends act just like they just left each other.  As they catch up and guide each other through new stages in life, the main thing is they are there for each other.

The Cougar Club is a wonderful feel-good friend book that inspires and entertains.  The characters are well developed and the plot moves smoothly.  So smoothly in fact that the pages just flew by.

Women young and old can enjoy this book and I highly recommend this wonderful read.

Rating Breakdown:
Characterization:   1.75/2.0
Plot:                     1.75/2.0
Writing:                1.75/2.0
Attention-holding:   1.0/1.0
Ending:                   1.0/1.0
Believable:            0.75/1.0
Genre:                    1.0/1.0  
Rating:              9.0/10.0
About the Book:

Meet three women who aren't about to run and hide just because the world says they should be on the shelf and out of circulation.
Her life seems perfect until she loses her high-powered advertising job and catches her live-in lover in a compromising position—with his computer!
This sexy TV news anchor is in danger of being replaced by a twentysomething blond bimbo. Wasn't it just yesterday that she was the up-and-coming star?
A married dermatologist, Elise thinks her plastic surgeon husband is playing doctor with someone else.
Kat firmly believes that aging gracefully isn't about giving up; it's about living life with your engine on overdrive. So this unofficial "Cougar Club" quickly learns three things about survival of the fittest in today's youth-obsessed society: True friendship never dies, the only way to live is real, and you're never too old to follow your heart.

About the Author:

Susan McBride is the author of The Cougar Club (January 2010, from HarperCollins/Avon) about three 45-year-old friends who happen to date younger men. She has also written three books in The Debs young adult series (Random House/Delacorte) set in Houston, including The Debs; Love, Lies, and Texas Dips; and the forthcoming Gloves Off. In addition, she’s penned five Debutante Dropout Mysteries (HarperCollins/Avon) set in Dallas: Blue BloodThe Good Girl’s Guide to MurderThe Lone Star Lonely Hearts ClubNight of the Living Deb,  and Too Pretty to Die (HarperCollins/Avon).
Once called “The Lou’s Whodunit Queen” by Sauce magazine in St. Louis, Susan was named one of the city’s “top singles” in 2005 by St. Louis Magazine, but is single no more. She tied the knot in February of 2008. Susan was the cover girl for the February 2009 issue of St. Louis Woman magazine, where she was featured in the article “Paperback Princess.”
Susan has won a Lefty Award for Best Humorous Mystery, a Romantic Times magazine Reviewers’ Choice Award for Best Amateur Sleuth Mystery, and was twice nominated for Anthony Awards for Best Paperback Original, and was one of three finalists for the William Rockhill Nelson Award for Literary Excellence (for Kansas and Missouri Authors). She lives in Brentwood, Missouri, with her husband.

Susan McBride's website
Susan McBride also blogs at The Book Belles and at The Stiletto Gang 

Susan’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS

Monday, February 1st: Cindy’s Love of Books
Thursday, February 4th: The Winey Mommy
Monday, February 8th: My Overstuffed Bookshelf
Wednesday, February 10th: The Book Zombie
Monday, February 15th: This That and the Other Thing
Wednesday, February 17th: Stacy’s Books
Thursday, February 18th: All About {n}
Monday, February 22nd: Clever Girl Goes Blog
Tuesday, February 23rd: Simply Stacie
Wednesday, February 24th: My Reading Room
Thursday, February 25th: Write Meg


Guest Post with Author Bill Walker of A Note From an Old Aquaintance

I was quite unprepared for love when first it came to me. I was fifteen and attending a new boarding school in Western Massachusetts, renowned as much for its high academic standards as it was for its bucolic location nestled in a horseshoe of the Berkshire Mountains. It was my first day there and after meeting my roommate, stowing my gear and making my bunk, I decided to take a walk around the campus. The grounds were alive with students. You could tell the new ones. Like me, they strolled around in a semi-catatonic daze, trying to get their bearings.

It was later in the afternoon when I saw Claudia for the first time. I literally stopped in my tracks, watching her stride up the walkway toward the main building, where the new students were to meet for a brief orientation. The spun gold of her light blonde hair caught the rays of the September sun as it swayed across her shoulder blades, and the air grew thick around me, my breath catching in my throat. Her Caribbean-blue eyes shown with an inner light, set into a face while not supermodel beautiful, nonetheless struck me with its knowing innocence. Her body, however, was far from innocent, shaped in curvaceous ways no fifteen-year-old body should have been. I was captivated. And I had no idea what in hell to do.

You see, I'd always been very shy, and while I'd had crushes on girls before, none of them hit me with the primal force of nature that was Claudia. The emotions rushing through me every time I caught sight of her were so intense—so powerful—my heart raced and my tongue seized in my mouth, rendering me mute. Eventually, I worked up the courage to speak to her and we became friends, but I wanted so much more and lacked the courage to say or do anything about it. I watched, in agony, as she took up with another boy, their attraction to each other a palpable thing.

When she broke up with him a month or two later, I was hopeful again, but those fleeting aspirations were dashed, when one of the "big men on campus" swept her off her feet. He broke her heart shortly thereafter and I tried to be of solace to her, to be the friend she needed, in the hopes she would at last see the love brimming in my heart. I ached to declare myself, but feared ridicule, or worse, the dreaded "we're just friends" speech. Alas, she found romance with yet another boy and after a few dark nights of the soul I finally realized she and I would never have that kind of relationship.
I only spent a year at the school, as my family moved from Connecticut to Florida that spring, where I attended a private day school. The truth was I could never go back to that school nestled in the mountains, could never walk those ivied halls again without being reminded of her. I still think of Claudia every now and then and wonder how her life's turned out. I hope she's happier now than she was then.

If you're out there, Claudia, now you know the truth....