Sunday, February 14, 2010

TLC Book Tour: The Cougar Club

The Cougar Club: A NovelThe Cougar Club: A Novel

I hated the characters in this book, but in general the book was ok.  It was well-written, the characters were well developed, the storyline developed and resolved nicely but I didn't like the characters.  Who were they?  They are three women in their forties who were high school chums.  The story opens with Kat being fired from her job with a New York advertising agency.  When she gets home and tells her significant other, she realizes how he just doesn't get it, and never will, and realizes that she has been miserable for years.  She decides to head home to St. Louis to re-evaluate her life.  She re-kindles her friendship with Carla, who is the city's favorite news anchor--and who is feeling threatened by the cute young thing at the station, who just happens to be sleeping with the boss, who just happens to Carla's ex---oh, and the way Carla got her break was by sleeping with that same boss.  The third friend is Elise.  Elise married her high school sweetheart, who became a successful plastic surgeon.  Elise is a dermatologist and they have one son who is a freshman in college.  Elise has noticed that her husband has been growing more distant.  Is her life going to change soon, for the worse?

I like romance novels, but it has sort of hit me lately that I'm spending a lot of time reading about women who are half my age, or younger.  I was hoping this book about women who are closer to my age would be a winner for me but it wasn't.  Why?  Because it is about women who are miserable, and it seems much of their misery is of their own making. On the other hand, I'd like to put this book in the hands of young women who, in my opinion, are throwing their lives away--allowing jobs to consume their lives, hooking up with men who are not willing to commit, and spending way too much time and money worrying about appearance. Now, I'm not advocating making finding a husband your main goal in life, however I do wonder how many forty-something single women have wished they had spent more time looking for a husband rather than for recreational sex.  I'm not against women having careers, but I wonder how many forty-something women with fancy careers an no babies wish they had babies?  I'm not against looking nice, but why in the world should I think I should look like I'm 20?  Frankly, I wish I had the guts to quit coloring my hair and become the only gray-haired woman in my office, but I don't--but as far as botox shots, boob jobs, tummy tucks and the like, why in the world should I go to that much trouble to avoid looking like I'm over 40?  I'm a 40 something woman who is actually happy with my life.  I have a wonderful husband who is never going to get rich, or be asked to be on the cover of GQ, but he is kind, loyal, reliable, a good father, and I doubt he'll leave me if I put on a few pounds or wrinkles.  I don't have a fancy job, but the bills here get paid, and I don't have a problem maintaining a life outside of work.  I know I need to lose some weight, and I'm going to, soon, but my sense of self-worth isn't really all that tied up in my weight.  I guess a book about someone like me would be boring, but I'll take my boring life over the lives of these Donna Karan-wearing, Chanel-carrying, Jaguar-driving boy-toy dating "Cougars".


  1. Wow, Ruth, I'm so sorry you didn't like The Cougar Club (namely, the characters). I guess that's why there are so many novels out there: because we all have different tastes. I happen to love Kat, Carla, and Elise (well, I'm kind of their mom so I adore them, warts and all). They're at turning points in their lives and looking to find their passion, in life and love. Target has selected it as a "Bookmarked Breakout" book, the Midwest Booksellers Association named it a February Midwest Connections Pick, and MORE Magazine has dubbed it one of the "February Books We're Buzzing About." So different strokes for different folks, I guess. I hope your readers will keep open minds and give The Cougar Club a chance!

    Thank you for hosting the contest.


  2. Susan, thanks for stopping by. It is interesting how you see your characters as ready to start something new (which I agree, they were) and I see them where they are, which is miserable. Hope the blog tour is successful and folks love your book, and I'd love to see you come back and participate in some of our discussions this week.

  3. It's true that a lot of people's misery is self-inflicted. We often don't realize how our choices now are going to affect our life later.

    Thanks for being on the tour, Rann. I'm sorry you didn't like the book, but you write quite a thought-provoking review!

  4. I got way behind on my blog reading and just got back to it. So, I know I am late on this review but I found it interesting when I read it this evening.

    RAnn, I completely understand and agree with what you are saying. I haven't read this book but I too am not too sure that I would like the characters. I have a hard time identifying with characters that are miserable in their lives and don't find a way to appreciate the positives in their lives.

    Maybe this has to do with my age and lifestyle - late 50's, happily married for 39 years, 4 grown children that I am close to, conservative lifestyle and I too need to lose a few pounds. But, I read some of these books about the Cougar women and I just want to hit some of the characters over the head.

    After reading the author's viewpoint, though, I do want to read the book and hope that I see the characters in a positive way like she does.


View My Stats