How Could She

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 23 Sep 2019

Member Reviews

This book definitely defines the word “”frenemies”  with three different women. I thought the author did a wonderful job with the plot and character development.
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How Could She? brought out so much emotion. It's a novel that snuck up on me.  I chose it because of the theme of print media dying that sets the scene. I stayed for the superb complexity of the characters and the realism of their friendships; jealousy, support, envy, competition, memories, future plans, and so much more.   Lauren Mechling's character profiles are distinct and clear voiced. I really appreciated how much I wanted to discuss the story and it's themes as I was reading. That need to seek out people that have read How Could She?, and to recommend it to people that I believe would feel the same, is what makes me think that this novel would make a perfect book discussion selection.  I would like to read more from  Lauren Mechling.
I received my copy through NetGalley under no obligation.
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{My Thoughts}
Geraldine, Sunny and Rachel first met in their early twenties when they all worked for the same magazine in Toronto. Geraldine was close to both, while Sunny and Rachel tolerated each other. As the world of print media shrank, Sunny and Rachel eventually shifted to NYC, ending up at the same publication. Geraldine longed for the excitement of New York and after pulling herself together following a horrible break up she finally made the move herself.

How Could She had two themes running through the story: the first, the dying field of print media and its impact on each of the friends and the second, the complicated relationships between the three thirty-something women. The better of the two by far was the thorny and ever shifting female friendships. Geraldine had always been the lynch pin between down-to-earth Rachel and the more glamorous Sunny, and that often was not an easy place to be.

“In her meaner moments, Geraldine thought of her two friends’ relationships as akin to that of a chambermaid and a VIP guest at a grand hotel.”

As Geraldine made the move to NYC, she found that frenemies Rachel and Sunny were suddenly spending a lot of time together…without her. I loved the shifting dynamics between the three women and how they all needed each other, yet pushed away. Rachel was needy, Geraldine fragile, and Sunny aloof. Their struggles with lives that weren’t quite living up to their own expectations and the efforts to be present for one another had a razor-sharp edge to them. Bravo Lauren Mechling!

“Geraldine and Rachel just stood there, still and cruel. “What is wrong with us?” Sunny cried into her palms. “Are we ever going to get to a point where we can just be? Where we’re not a group of women bearing grudges and sizing ourselves up against one another?”

You have to appreciate a writer who so thoroughly gets women and the power of female friendship at its worst and its best. Though the media side of How Could She sometimes felt a little slow, the friendship side shone and for that How Could She is a book worth adding to your summer reading list. 

“Sylvie didn’t understand. It would be another ten years at least until Sylvie realized that the mediocre, imperfect people she’d happened to align herself with would end up being more significant to her than she could possibly fathom.”

Note: I received a copy of this book from Viking (via NetGalley) in exchange for my honest review.
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I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.  I was so excited to read this book, but think I perhaps misunderstood what it was about, judging a book by both its cover and title and expecting a fun beach read.  Instead, this reminded me a bit of Sally Rooney books, where not much happens, and you spend most of the book inside characters' heads, watching them meander through life.  For fans of Rooney, they'll probably enjoy this book, but I am not a Rooney fan (though I greatly respect her writing abilities).  Essentially, I was just not engaged with How Could She.  I couldn't keep track of the tertiary characters and really didn't care about the main ones.  I hate leaving a bad review, and I am sure this book will be a big hit with other types of readers, but for me, it was very very hard to force myself to finish it.
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3.5 Stars. This was a really engaging and interesting read about 3 women living in New York trying to navigate their lives, careers and relationships. It took me awhile to get into it because at first it was very hard for me to find any of the main characters relatable. However, the more I read, the more I realized I couldn’t put it down. I felt that these women were a very realistic portrayal of how complicated relationships can be. Thank you to Netgalley and Penguin Group Viking for the ARC.
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I received an ARC of this novel from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

This novel is fraught with the frenemy drama of three young career women.  It would make an excellent book club read as it would facilitate conversations about loyalty and betrayal.
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I couldn't get into this book, the characters weren't resonating with me.  After reading about 20% of the book, I decided I didn't want to read anymore. 

I think part of it was the formatting was a little wonky, there were constantly - in the middle of words, paragraphs and spacing were off and for a book that I wasn't really feeling, it wasn't worth the extra effort to read with the formatting.
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This book was like sex and the city, but better. And you can't beat sex and the city.  

How could she is a coming age book about three friends that are all going through challenges in their life with each one hanging on just barely at times.  I found Geraldine and Rachel to be the most likeable characters because their storyline were so relatable.  Geraldine with her breakup, and again trying to find her footing and Rachel a struggling writer trying adjust to motherhood.  Those themes alone are immensely relatable to all coming of age women and new moms alike.

Reading this book you see yourself and your friends in these women.  The friendship theme makes it a great book to reach a really big audience because as women, our friendships are such a core part of our lives.

You are sure to identify with one of these ladies.

Thank you to netgalley and the publisher for this ARC.
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Thanks @NetGalley for my early copy of How Could She by Lauren Mechling.


“What’s my next move,” is the question Geraldine keeps asking herself as her life changes rapidly. The story is relatable; a mid-thirty-year-old woman struggling to find her way after her engagement is called off. Her closest friends, who are married, live in New York while she lives in Toronto. Due to grief of her failed relationship her professional life is stagnant and her position with the company is unstable. As if the pile could not get any bigger she is tasked with finding a new roommate because her roommate is moving out in the next few weeks.

The story transitions between the perspective of three best friends. The transition of perspectives worked beautifully, and I looked forward to reading the next friend’s perspectives, especially if they were having a disagreement. Her friends Rachel and Sunny struggle with the desire to help their friend while dealing with their private struggles. Geraldine seems to be the one whose life is a complete mess, but we soon discover that not everything is as it seems. Are the friends willing to remove their masks and confide in each other or will they choose to deal with their problems on their own while pretending all is well? Do they truly want what’s best for their friend or does their friend’s life falling apart secretly make them feel better about themselves? Are they genuine when they tell one another they'll be there for each other or is this something said out of obligation? 

Their friendship is challenged as secrets are revealed, year old resentments surface, and the ones who think they know best may be the ones in most need of help. Life is best understood backwards and sometimes the rejection of what we wanted most leads us on the path towards our greatest awakening and growth. You’ll have to read the book to find out whether Geraldine will seize the opportunities presented to her, whether the friendships are able to overcome the secrets revealed, and whether Geraldine gives the man who broke her heart another chance.
 
It was an easy read. A nice break from my usual thriller. It wasn't a predictable romance type book. Many times I identified with the conversations among the best friends as something my friends and I would discuss. I look forward to reading more books written by this author.
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Thanks #Netgalley for a copy of this book!

I enjoyed following the transition of three old friend reuniting after years and how friendships have evolved. I think they story line is very relate-able to females in their thirties.  I enjoyed following each of the three girls and how their lives evolved.  One is married with young daughter, trying to navigate a the life of being a working mom. Another married into a wealthy family while pursuing her art. And the last is a single girl who ended a serious relationship who is trying to start over. I think these three story lines help capture the audience, giving a variety of characteristics that the reader could relate to.
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I read this in one sitting, which is something I often struggle to do anymore. 

That being said, I can't say that I loved this. I liked it very much, though. It was funny and smart, and the writing itself was great. But this novel is expected, there was little about it that I didn't anticipate happening the longer that I read it.
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I had fun reading this novel. I laughed at many of the lines. It was a great read that captured the way many felt about 2016 and 2017.
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A very compelling and very realistic tale of three friends (fremenies?) whose fortunes rise and fall throughout the course of the book.  Loved the insidery publishing details; I gasped when one character stole another's story idea.  I would love to know where each of the characters does next, even though the ending was satisfying.  Liked the author's breezy writing style and completely related to the competitive female friendships depicted.
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Geraldine is our typical woman searching for her spot in life when life has been anything but kind.
She struggles to relate to her closest friends who seem to have that 'perfect' life and she desperately wants to be like them if only for a day.
She forces the universe to catch up to her demands and tries her best to accomodate life's curve balls but sometimes she strikes out.
New York media is a tough business and female friendships is equally challenging.
What results is a mixture of these two groupings and the chance to show just how wild, wooly, and wonderful she truly has become.
Be fierce. Stay assertive. Go for what you feel you deserve.
Thank you to Lauren, the publisher, NetGalley, and Aldiko for this ARC in exchange for this honest review.
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I love novels that play out like a movie in my mind and How Could She did exactly that!  For any women in their late twenties, thirties or forties this novel is a must read!   

Geraldine finds herself in her thirties trying to pick herself up by her bootstraps in both her personal and professional life.  Her heart was shattered 4 years ago when her fiancé broke things off and Geraldine has basically floundered since.  Determined to make a change, Geraldine moves from Toronto to New York City to persue her career goals—luckily for Geraldine, her very close friends Sunny and Rachel also live in NYC.  

Sunny and Rachel know each other through Geraldine and after several meetings the two did not hit it off (which is an understatement) so Geraldine has always kept their friendships separate.  Well imagine Geraldine’s surprise when Sunny and Rachel become friends...outside of Geraldine!!!  From that point, I strapped on my seatbelt and enjoyed the ride Lauren Mechling had written for us!

I think most of us learned at an early age when it comes to friendship two’s company and three’s a crowd!  I found myself laughing out loud and nodding my head at all of the relevant issues and situations throughout this original novel!  The pacing was perfect and there was never a lull- love that!  I thoroughly enjoyed all of the quick-witted quips, razor sharp sarcasm and relatable friendship issues that was packed into 4.5 star read!  Lauren Mechling has really wow’ed me and I cannot wait to read more from her in the future!
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A look at the complicated friendships of women. Full of love, jealousy, and distrust this is the story of how friendship can change as circumstances do.
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This is a typical novel about 3 women, secrets and rivalries. At the center of the story is Geraldine, triangulated in her relationships with Sunny and Rachel. It is Geraldine who has to struggle to regain her footing after a disastrous relationship and an unsatisfying job. 

Within the triangle lies betrayal and untruth. The reader learns it is not only Geraldine who must rebuild and reassess but all 3 women. 

I found this book a bit disappointing with a great deal that is entirely predictable.  I did like the underdog, Geraldine, and of course enjoyed the settings here in NYC.
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