Cover Image: The Friendship Club

The Friendship Club

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Member Reviews

i loved this book so much!! this was so fun and i'm so thankful that i got to read this one early! thank you so much to netgalley and everyone should pick this up soon!!!

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Marni McGuire is a famous cooking show host, married twice, widowed and then divorced, she is now happily single. Her life is filled doing a job she loves, cooking and styling food, with her best friend and production manager/chef, Ellen, and regular visits with her sister and daughter. Her pregnant daughter, Bella, worries that her mother isn’t as happy as she could be though, and arranges a date for her. However, Marni strikes up a friendship with a man on her own and the sparks of chemistry fly between them.

Bella, Marni’s daughter has her own issues being overloaded with pregnancy hormones, her emotions are all over the place and her marriage is suffering because of it.

Marni’s best friend, Ellen, married later in life to an older man. He suffered an aneurysm two years after, severely crippling him mentally and physically, and she ended up a caregiver for many years before he died. Widowed and happily single as well, she’s surprised when her neighbor, a retired firefighter, invites her over for dinner.

Sophia, Marni’s college intern has found herself in a passionate relationship that quickly turns into a frightening situation when the guy turns obsessive. She’s reluctant to share, feeling embarrassed and somehow responsible, but Marni, Ellen, and her father, Sam all step in to help. I was frightened for her and all involved!

The Friendship Club was part women’s fiction, part romance, with a surprising amount of suspense thanks to Sophia’s storyline! I loved the strong, supportive female friendships portrayed here, as well as the two mature romances! Don’t even get me started on all the mouth-watering food mentioned! There’s a reason Robyn Carr is so popular. Her stories are completely engrossing from the first page, and I was fully invested as these women navigated the ups and downs in their lives!

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“Friends who become family” is a familiar trope that Robyn Carr excels in and that exactly what the story was about. Marni is a successful chef where she has made a “must see” tv show from her home with the help of Ellen and Sophia as her crew. So many characters show up in this book that at first I had to keep going back to the beginning to remember who was who. There is Bella, Marni’s daughter and her husband Jason. Sam is Sophia’s father, Tom is a one time date for Marni, Jeff is the ex husband of Marni, and Mark, who is Ellen’s neighbor. Quite a crew but they make for a wonderful story and they all become a family of friends. I loved it. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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The first thing to mention is that THE FRIENDSHIP CLUB is certainly not a fluff piece. Not that there is anything even remotely wrong with fluff, love, and humor. Robyn Carr manages to add just the right amount of all three while tackling a much more difficult and challenging subject. Abuse. For sure since the main characters are women the initial emphasis is on women who have been victims of abuse, physical and emotional.

So many victims remain silent. Afraid of embarrassment or being judged as weak. Instead of putting the blame where it truly belongs, many believe that somehow it was their fault. What they did to cause the partner to lash out in retribution for something they unknowingly did. Hogwash. Robyn Carr could just as easily title this book Hogwash.
But I digress. THE FRIENDSHIP CLUB centers around a group of women who work together to produce a successful cooking show. Marni is the star, and the show is her baby. She worked her way up in various stages of the food industry. As a single mother she learned how to manage life and a career. In the meantime she also amassed a wonderful support group.

This group of women round out the story. Each contributes to a central theme that originally appears random, but then we come to see that each is a crucial element of the recipe. After all we are reminded that it is food and cooking that remains the core of the relationship of these friends and family members.

Marni, Ellen, and Sophia work together as a wonderful team on the cooking show. As such they are a cohesive group. Robyn Carr reminds us that people have lives that are much more complicated than appear on the surface. Our life experiences definitely shape who we are, what we become, not only in our personal lives but in our expectations.

So while these ladies are busy with chopping and cooking and following a recipe it is their lives that have become more complicated. Facing their pasts and looking for a better future. And being honest and open with the people who are so important to them.
Robyn Carr uses this quote by Maya Angelou, “when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time,” which kind of sums up the importance of this story. So if you are looking for a delightful tale with some extra spice look no further than THE FRIENDSHIP CLUB.

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The Friendship Club, a contemporary stand-alone by Robyn Carr, tells the story of middle aged syndicated tv show chef Marni McGuire and her close circle including her producer and 20 year best friend Ellen, her younger sister college professor Nettie, her very pregnant daughter Bella, and her college intern Sophia. All these ladies come together in a lovely tale of friendship, togetherness, and moving forward.

Other characters include Bella’s fellow attorney husband Jason, Marni’s ex-husband Jeff, Ellen’s neighbor retired firefighter Mark, Sophia’s father agriculture professor Sam Garner, and the charismatic, controlling, and sometimes violent Angelo. These characters, although secondary, provide the interplay, tension, and moving forward for the ladies.

This is an interesting study of the interplay between people in different relationships and how that interaction forms the crux of their lives. I did enjoy this book and recommend it.

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A heartfelt emotional story of four women from different generations that form a bond of friendship through thick and thin. All at different crossroads that might change their lives in many ways. Some even find romances when least expected. Loved the cooking that the women do, my stomach was growling a few times with the yummy cooking.

This was a book that I wanted to last, felt vested with these woman but I couldn't stop turning the pages. Fair warning though there are a few trigger points of domestic abuse and cheating, but woman are survivors!

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The Friendship Club is another delightful stand alone read from Robyn Carr. The story explores the friendships between  women, and the support they are to each other.

Marni and Ellen run a popular cooking show and have done so for the last twenty years. Both have a lot of life experience and now mid fifties and sixty years of age they are at a new stage in their lives. There is a lot of food talk so this will be very suitable for readers who love to cook.

Bella, Marnie's daughter is pregnant and dealing with all the challenges that go with that, Sophie who works part time for Marnie has some scary experiences that really rock her. Nettie - Marnie's sister is there as part of the group, bolstering up Marnie whenever she needs it.

For these women while they don't know it as we meet them, there are new beginnings about to happen in their lives . Exciting times!

I enjoyed it all, especially Ellen's neighbor Mark, retired fire fighter, coming up with a very moving way to help out in fire disasters.

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I always enjoy Robyn Carr’s writing style. In this book, I really enjoyed the female friendships and the diversity in age and background of the main characters. The support and camaraderie among the women in the story were a central theme that resonated well with me.

The book was a bit heavy at times with the focus on the psychology of stalking and gaslighting, but I still found the overall storyline compelling. It dealt with a variety of themes such as domestic violence, mental health, and second chances, bringing out a range of emotions as I read. The positive and uplifting nature of the friendships portrayed in the book left a lasting impression on me.

Overall, the author did a superb job of successfully weaving together multiple storylines that engaged me, with relatable characters facing real-life challenges.

I received an advance copy of the book. All opinions expressed here are my own.

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This is a touching story based on friendships, family relationships, domestic violence, mental health and second chances. It revolves around four women in different age groups centered around Marni McGuire.

Marni is a famous cooking show chef and have a successful TV show. Her daughter Bella is persistent when is comes to setting her mother up with blind dates, but Marni claims she is very happily single and not looking for a relationship since she is twice divorced.

Ellen, who works with Marni is widowed and after years of caretaking, now finds herself in a dilemma with her neighbor over a possible dinner date.

Sophia, who is an intern, has to deal with an abusive relationship.

The friendships in the book felt very real and heartwarming. There are there for one another no matter what the situation. Strong friendships make for a great support system!

I enjoyed the story and its characters. Many thanks to Netgalley and and the publisher for the ARC!

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I sometimes feel like i am a romance purist . This was a great story with amazing characters but it didn't feel like an HEA for any of the couples
I also felt the book was dealing with too much , staking , insecurity due to pregnancy, Trans issues. And top of that all the internal conflicts that the characters had.

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The Friendship Club is a womens fiction book about 4 friends who work together and who are each . having different issues in their life . I enjoyed reading about each character and watching them grow and work through their problems.

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This is classic women's fiction. There is romance, friendship with an upbeat ending. While it is not what you read when you want something weighty, it fits the bill. Is it a little formulaic? Yes. That is not necessarily a bad thing if the formula is done well as it is here. The characters were compelling and likeable. There was enough seriousness to keep this from being a beach read (not that that is a problem either, but something a reader might know). There is not literally a friendship club, but a group of women who are friends and who are there for one another. This is a book that most women need at times. I also think the male characters were interesting and three dimensional which is not always true in these types of novels.
I think it could have been a little shorter--there were a few parts where my interest waned just a little. I also wanted to see a little more dialogue because what was there was good.

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Every woman needs a Friendship Club in her life. I absolutely loved this book!

In The Friendship Club, Robyn Carr crafts a beautiful story of friendship and how those friendships can carry you through life’s joys and sorrows.

Marnie is a successful TV cooking show chef, widowed and divorced, and mom of Bella. Bella is an attorney who is five months pregnant and is experiencing the emotional, hormonal roller coaster of pregnancy. Ellen is Marnie’s producer, chef and a widow who spent the later part of her marriage caring for her ailing husband. She’s also Marnie’s right-hand woman. Sophia is Marnie’s intern and aspires to have a career in television, just like Marnie.

The Friendship Club is a well-crafted story about women of varying ages and life stages and how our life experiences can help guide others through similar situations, and how our pain can be used for good.

Thanks to NetGalley and Harlequin Trade Publishing, for a review eARC.

#TheFriendshipClub #NetGalley

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I did better listening to this book than I did reading it. Four women join together for the Friendship Club and rely on each other to get through life. Bella is pregnant after undergoing IVF and a little psycho toward her husband. She is obsessed with eating healthy and freaking out that her husband is cheating. Seems a little over dramatic to me. Bella proves she has been strong though in the past with abuse and is going to help women everywhere by speaking up. Sophia starts dating a guy that she can't get rid of. She sees the abusive signs, but he will not go away. He goes as far as to break in and send himself things from her phone. The girls come help her and call the police. Marni is just a very strong women that is sure of herself and always willing to offer help! These four all discover there is more to life than they are content with, and rely on each other to find out what they really want in life.

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As is typical for Carr, her latest emotional read combines engaging, realistic, and multigenerational characters with tough topics, such as domestic violence, love, and widowhood.. It's a journey of self-discovery for each of the female leads as they navigate the challenges life throws their way They learn to lean on each other for support.

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A fabulous story about adult women all living their lives and dealing with whatever comes their way with the love and support of each other. They’re all at different stages of their lives dealing with myriad serious real world/life issues and their bond is what gets them through it all. It’s an emotional and not the easiest read, but worth every moment. I truly appreciated a book about women being friends in the true sense of the word and not competing or doing anything other than wanting the best for each other. I adored every moment of this book. Be prepared though. Once you start you’ll want to keep going so clear plenty of time and settle in for a wonderful read.

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What a great book about these special women. I love the feelings they have for each other. It was fun to watch Marnie and Ellen change their minds about a certain aspect of their lives. Poor Bella, I’m sure many of us can relate and sympathize with what she was going through. I hope no one has had to deal with what Sophia had to go through. Thank goodness for good support systems! I loved the story and the characters. I received this book from NetGalley, but my opinion is my own.

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I am a huge fan of Robyn Carr stories, whether stand alone or series. Love her character development. Story is about 4 co-workers each at different stages of life. Facing changes and growth. It really is very relatable! A great book to read on a cold Winter, or really any day!

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A book about four women, who are at crossroads in their life. As they navigate life, they face challenges, decisions, and the women share their stories. It helps to know someone else has gone through things that you are going through. It was a nice reminder, not only to be supportive of others, but when needed ask for it. Sometimes life gets in the way, and we forget we don't have to go it alone.
I received an ARC from MIRA through NetGalley.

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Warmhearted book of contemporary friendships

I really love Robyn Carr's books, her series and her standalone novels. "The Friendship Club", as described in the listing, is about four co-workers each at a turning point in their lives. Ms Carr doesn't shy away from some of the darker issues in our lives, the stalkers, gaslighters and abusers. Some of the characters are mature and ready for a new challenge, should I even suggest love? Others are young and more vulnerable. Definitely a book to read beside a fire during the next blizzard or in a recliner by the beach or pool, anywhere you can just settle down and enjoy your reading.

Thank you to the publisher who lent me an e-arc via Netgalley. This review is optional and my own opinion.

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