Cover Image: It All Comes Down to This

It All Comes Down to This

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Member Reviews

What an interesting take on a family novel! Meet the Geller sisters: Beck, Claire, and Sophie - all clearly related but terribly different and all facing large problems in their personal lives. Their beloved Matriarch, Mari is dying of cancer and has left an interesting caveat in her will.  The caveat upends many of the plans the sisters have made and this causes much of the drama.

I greatly enjoyed this novel. I liked getting to know the characters and hearing about their problems. I will say that some of the situations did not seem plausible, and there were just too many plots to pull together. The writing, however, was fantastic and I continue to read on to see what would happen next. If you love a contemporary family drama, fight with your own siblings at get togethers, or just are interested in situation where the Will surprises all -then #ItCallComesDownToThis is for you! #STMartinsPress #Netgalley #NetGallyereads
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There's no doubt that Therese Anne Fowler is an incredibly talented writer, as evidenced by "A Good Neighborhood", but many things about this book missed the mark a bit for me. The plot felt a little piecemeal & meandering, and I felt that there were too many plot points to focus on & this detracted from the ultimate impact of the book. Fowler is best when she's writing about conflict between characters, making even the most irrational of responses feel relatable, and I wish that she had focused on Beck as the main character, with C.J. as a secondary, leaving Claire and Sophie as recurring characters and not including as much of their day-to-day lives. It wasn't relevant to the arc of the story & made the book longer than it needed be. Despite all of this, I would still recommend this book as an entertaining, thought-provoking summer read.
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This book about family secrets, sisterhood, and missed chances really struck a chord with me.  While I most identified with Beck, I did find the other two sisters (Claire and Sophie) interesting in their own ways as well.  In particular, I hadn't ever seen an examination of what it's like to be a "influencer-adjacent" like Sophie, who survives through her friendships and connections with famous friends, but has accomplished little on her own and wound up seriously in debt.  When their mother dies and leaves the old famous home in Maine to the girls to sell off, it causes ripples throughout all three lives they didn't see coming.  If you're a fan of intricately-woven family dynamics, you should enjoy this one.  The writing is well-done, as we've come to expect from Fowler who has established her bonafides with best sellers in the past.  While the plot did get lost a bit in the middle and began to meander, it ultimately came together in the end in a satisfying way.
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This is a contemporary family drama about three estranged sisters coming together after their mother's sudden death to sell their mother's vacation home in Maine.  Each of the sisters has issues she is dealing with.  This book was well-written, but not all that engaging.  Everyone has a messy life, and I wasn't all that enthralled to find out what was going on with each sister.
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Marti is dying but she does not want her three daughters to know until  she actually passes. It was interesting watching the relationship between the sisters, the differences and the similarities and their relationship with each other and the family.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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I received an ARC of this novel from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

A mother dies and leaves a video exposing secrets to her three daughters.   

I love the storylines in this novel.
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I wanted to like this book but couldnt ever seem to get into it. It just fell flat for me and i could barely finish this.
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Thank you St Martins Press and Net Galley for this e-ARC in exchange for my honest review.

I loved this book! 

Strong women, an irresistable southern gent, and strong family connections.

The sisters are so realistic with their banter, the mom was a smart, kind person who knew her very different daughters well.

Therese Anne Foster's get book yet!
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I was impressed with how much I loved the simplicity of this book. It was a normal story about pretty normal people. Even the dialogue is smooth and natural. Each character had their own hurdles and catalysts but there were no truly earth-shattering events (though a serious plot twist), unlike Fowler's previous book "A Good Neighborhood". 

The main bulk of the narrative is on three sisters whose Mom has just died and they need to decide what to do with the vacation home. Each one is in such a vastly different place in her life that this is no easy task. There is also a side narrative of a guy just out of jail, C.J. Reynolds that plays in later. I will say though, it's not quite like the summary describes it. I felt he had less effect on the plot than the description would have one think

I think this is a PERFECT book club book as there is so much to unpack with each of the characters and sometimes there is truly no "right answer". 

There were several plot points that seemed a bit random, or forced, but real life itself can be messy with no seeming purpose. The ending was wrapped up nicely though even if everyone didn't quite get what they thought they wanted.
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I started reading this book expecting your typical beach read about sisters, sibling rivalry and long simmering family secrets. Well it was all that, but in addition there is wit and a greater complexity to the characters than I’ve come to expect in summer escape stories.
I loved Marti the mother who set the whole drama spinning at the beginning with her death. Although she wasn’t on stage long, her decisions throughout her life and at her death had ramifications for all three of her daughters.
The daughters themselves are unique. They might make a good case study on birth order as an element in personality development. I loved reading about the full lives of each, Beck as a writer, Claire, a doctor and Sophie as a social media Influencer. Fowler captured the financial and societal pressures on each.
 The men in the lives of these women were well drawn to give the reader insights into the impact they had on the sisters’ lives and decisions. They did not stand out as sharply as the women, but that was clearly the author’s intent.
Except for C.J,, whose story is revealed little by little until the very end. He is a very sympathetic character, especially as he relates to newly orphaned Arlo. I was rooting for this pair from their first meeting. And I loved the way C.J.’s story,  both in the past and present,  gives the reader an understanding of the conflicts of the sisters and an ever greater satisfaction as the story draws to a conclusion. 
Thanks to Netgalley for allowing me to read this book for an honest review,
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Solid 3.5 star read for me rounded up to 4. 

I found the overall themes of It All Comes Down to This to be wonderful~ acceptance, family dynamics, starting over ~ and most enjoyed the story of C.J. Reynolds. He truly changed and embraced the life he'd chosen and I loved his relationship with Arlo. Quite frankly, C.J., Arlo, and Arlo's grandmother were my favorite characters. 

Therein lies the problem, in my opinion. The sisters should have been the most sympathetic characters, the ones the reader enjoyed. I didn't really care for the sisters. I thought they were selfish, spoiled each in the own way, and not all all people I'd want to meet.

The setting was great and while I did enjoy the book in the end, I'd have been much happier to read about just C.J., Arlo, and the grandmother. I'm wondering if there might be a future novel there?

Thank you to the author, Netgalley, and the publisher for an ARC at my request. All thoughts are my own.
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I could not get into this book, and I did not finish it.  I made it through 21%, but realized it was just not keeping my interest.  I really wanted to like it, but it was just too long in building the characters and explaining how the three sisters' lives were different from each other.  It took a lot of time developing characters who ended up feeling empty and uninteresting to me.  

To be fair, this book probably does appeal to many people.  I really like this author, and i really wanted to like this book.  I just could not.  I feel bad giving it 3 stars, but settled on that, as this book may just be a one star book to me, but to many will be a four or five star book.  The story was just too slow and uninteresting to me.  I could almost see where it was going and where each character would end up.  Maybe I should have finished it...I might be totally wrong.  I just can't when there are so many great books out there waiting to be read.  Thanks for the opportunity, NetGalley.  Perhaps I will go back and read this at some other time.  If so, I will update this review.
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I. Couldn't get into this book.  It wasn't my taste.  I tried.   I chose it because it was part of a book group.    I thank netgalley for letting me read this in exchange for an honest review.
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I received an advanced reader’s copy in exchange for an honest review

I didn’t love this book and I didn’t hate it. I found all the characters to be very unlikeable but I kept reading because the quality of the writing was so strong.  None of the people deserved the HEA they all seemed to get. 3.5 rounded up
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This book blew me away! I was unable to but it down. Perfect, dazzlingly, very well written. The details the author described throughout the book was so amazing. The  characters and storyline were fantastic. The ending I did not see coming  Truly Amazing and appreciated the whole story. This is going to be a must read for many many readers. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! No spoilers. Beyond amazing I enjoyed this book so very much. The characters and storyline were fantastic. The ending I did not see coming  Could not put down nor did I want to. Truly Amazing and appreciated the whole story. This is going to be a must read for many many readers. Maybe even a book club pick.
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It All Comes Down to This is a touching and heartbreaking at times story of three sisters by Therese Anne Fowler. Many of us have been exactly where Marti’s daughters find themselves at this stage of their life. So without a doubt it is an emotional relatable story. 

The author has a gift for writing which is clearly shown in giving warts and all characterization of the characters in this story. Women’s Fiction story with the ups and downs that come in life. Lots of drama and lots of messy, complicated relationships. An interesting read to say the least. 

An ARC of the book was provided by the publisher through NetGalley which I voluntarily chose to read and reviewed. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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I am definitely a fan of Therese Anne Fowler and her fictional families that certainly could be real life situations. In this story, the mother of three girls is dying and is going to do it her way. Along the way the reader gets to know each daughter and who they are, the oldest of them, 44 and already a grandma. I love the general theme of family, specifically your sisters, and how you can love them and not like them very much at the same time. I also like that sometimes things don't go your way and you do not get what you want but, like Mick says, sometimes, you get what you need. Midlife is definitely a life far from over and yes, you can move forward and every day, you get a chance for a new beginning.
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It All Comes Down to This tells the story of the Geller sisters – Beck, Claire and Sophie, strong-minded and very different women.  Beck, an aspiring author under wraps, is in a sexless marriage to Paul.  Claire, a Chicago pediatric doctor, just got divorced after she confessed her love for Paul.  Sophie, an influencer, has no roots or money and she’s nearing 40.  When the family matriarch dies, the girls uncover some secrets and are forced to reckon with others. 


I can see this book being a BOTM choice and having commercial appeal.  It did not work for me, although I had no trouble getting through it.  I thought the voices of the sisters were too interchangeable and the storylines to be a little eye-rolling.  It also bugged me that the voice completely changed in the last chapter (from third person to first person) out of nowhere.  This is one of those books that I’m fine with having read, but it did not move or speak to me.
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Engaging writing and slow reveal mysteries are the strengths of this book.  

Three sisters are dealing with their mother’s sudden death and the terms of her will which requires that they sell the family’s summer camp. Along the way they discover secrets about their mother and each other, and each of them changes their own lives dramatically for the better. 

There is family drama but a very staid variety. This book is mostly about the struggles and personal development of the sisters. 

For me, the fact that a large part of this book takes place in Maine is icing on the cake and possibly the best part. I didn’t find the characters terribly sympathetic or interesting but the writing kept me engaged, along with descriptions of Mount Desert Isle.
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Several years ago, my husband came home and told me that one of the people he worked with said “your wife likes to read, doesn’t she? Tell her to read my sister’s book.”  And with that, I read Therese Anne Fowler’s first book, and have been a fan all this time.

This is not “typical” Fowler.  It’s a departure from her usual style, which I love, but this has great appeal as well.  Labeled by the author herself as a “dramadey” it’s a breath of fresh air in our covid restricted lives.  A little less serious, a little more fraught with sisterly issues, and a completion to the book that is satisfying, I say hurray for thoughtful, well-written escape fiction.

I like family drama, I like a good laugh, and I’ve come to recognize that unlikely circumstances and outcomes aren’t nearly as unlikely as I once believed, thanks to the pandemic.  I am grateful I got to read this book early.
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