Reinventing Emily Brown

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Pub Date 19 Sep 2023 | Archive Date 31 Dec 2023

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REINVENTING EMILY BROWN is a delightful story exploring the theme of second chances in both life and love. Told with a seamless blend of humour and heart, readers are invited along with Emily, her teenage daughter Hayley, and her mum Mary, as they navigate the challenges and expectations faced by women in today’s society while uncovering their own personal values along the way.

When life knocks Emily Brown, it knocks her hard. 

Broke, homeless, and teetering on the edge of divorce, Emily finds herself on the doorstep of her childhood home in the coastal hamlet of Curlew Bay, with her disgruntled fifteen-year-old daughter in tow. 

Contemplating how her once successful life has unravelled so completely, Emily realises she can either wallow in despair or, as her mother would say, ‘take the bull by the horns’. Determined to prove she’s not a complete and utter failure, Emily hatches a daring, albeit feeble, plan: a reinvention of epic proportions.

Despite her concerted efforts at a fresh start, Emily’s plans are constantly thrown into disarray. Hayley is hell-bent on making each day a battleground, Emily’s usually reliable mum, Mary, is acting oddly out of character, and Emily’s ‘perfect’ sister, Lucy, is hiding something behind her flawless façade. Throw in a cantankerous basset hound and a disastrous foray into the beauty industry and Emily is left wondering if she’s made the biggest mistake of her life.

Little does she know, her greatest challenge lies in Simon, her childhood sweetheart. As their lives are once again entwined, the secret Emily has guarded fiercely for years is now poised to shatter everything she’s tried so desperately to build. 

REINVENTING EMILY BROWN is a delightful story exploring the theme of second chances in both life and love. Told with a seamless blend of humour and heart, readers are invited along with Emily, her...

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Average rating from 65 members

Featured Reviews

This was a book that hit home on many levels. The rat race to be perfect is real. I appreciated that this highlighted what the exterior world may judge as a failure. Family and fulfillment are the root to happiness, not some tik tok version of reality.

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Emily Brown was over it ALL, it was time for change
So many relateable passages in this book, I found myself nodding my head quite often as I read.
Coming out the other side of motherhood myself albeit a bit older than Emily I’m doing a bit if my own reinventing, I ‘got’ Emily.
I appreciated the often terse family dynamics because in reality - that’s life
I love that Emily made the hard decisions, although not always best for everybody else, she prioritised herself
There were times I wondered what on earth she was thinking/doing, I couldn’t work out how it would play out, it unfolded beautifully
Thank you for another great read Jodi.

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Emily is like most moms in their mid-thirties...exhausted. Life has thrown her a few curveballs and the life she thought she was running towards since she was 20, she was now running from. She seemed to be successfully failing at marriage, work, and motherhood. When she returned home to the small, idyllic, town, she had run from (and the boy whose heart she had broken) the past comes flooding back.

Emily's story is relatable and a beautiful reminder that "you can't pour from an empty cup"

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I loved this! And this is the perfect women's fiction to get lost into Emily's life and su ked into her love for Simon. Perfection!
I just reviewed Reinventing Emily Brown by Jodi Gibson. #reinventingemilybrown #NetGalley
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The Reinvention of Emily Brown
Jodi Gibson

5 stars

Thank you NetGalley for my copy of The Reinvention of Emily Brown by Jodi Gibson. I have not received any compensation for this review. All thoughts and opinions contained in this review are my own and mine alone.

In summary: A women’s fiction delight. A book that may well resonate with many women as they hit their forties and figure out what is next in their life, where to go to next, how to accomplish the next chapters in life. The characters felt real and it was if I knew them. For one thing I could definitely relate to the main character Emily and her penchant for running away from things rather than facing things head on, but I digress.

Jodi Gibson’s depiction of Emily Brown/Mendez in a somewhat midlife crisis mode was excellent. I liked the fact that Jodi gave Emily a reality that women of forty can empathise with. Some of us have already been there in similar situations. Emily has strength and agency but she is totally unaware of this, instead she can be a little ‘woe is me’ kind of person and blame everyone else for her shortfalls. I am sure many readers will know of someone like that in their lives and can relate to. What is different in this story, is the fact that Emily knows that she can’t hide any longer. Her husband was an alcoholic and clearing out the joint bank accounts as he dealt with his job loss, Emily could not take the strain any longer and then she loses her own job. That is a lot for a person to go through, a very emotional time and I think Jodi did this storyline justice while being delicate. I also appreciate the depiction of the drama between mother and daughters as it feels accurate and most mothers can imagine the angst their teenagers go through and so it felt just right for the story and the plot.
The writing is easy to digest, and light despite the themes depicted such as alcoholism and family drama. The book was hard to put down and finished in two days straight. I found myself enjoying every aspect of the book. I also enjoyed the morals of the story here, and they were these : doesn’t matter how much you run from your problems, they will always find a way to bite you hard. It is better to face the problems as they arise. Also, it is okay to feel comfortable within yourself when you have had enough. It is okay to leave a relationship when there is nothing left.

Thank you Jodi Gibson for an excellent story.

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I have never read anything by this author, but I’m so glad I did! This sweet story reminded me of myself and some of my best friends at the moment—real, raw, a protagonist who doesn’t have it all and have it all together! So perfect for the shift in season and a wonderful read with so many layers! Would definitely read this author again!

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I received this as an ARC from netgalley.

This is really similar to my story I'm going through right now. But I really enjoyed going on Emily Browns journey of self-discovery. I love how she handled things and learned more about herself. I enjoyed the ending. I think this author ended her story perfectly. I couldn't ask for a better story like this of self-discovery.

Their were some grammatical errors, but it was an ARC.

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When Emily Brown is left at the grocery store with no money to pay for her purchases, her husband’s gambling addiction is the final straw, and she leaves, carting her horrified teenage daughter with her to her hometown of Curlew Bay.

Crashing with her parents, and instantly back at war with her “perfect” sister, Emily flounders from one situation to the next, screwing up a variety of new jobs, and coming face-to-face with her high school sweetheart. He’s never forgiven her for breaking his heart. But the secret she’s kept from him all these years needs to come out, as well as secrets her own family has been hiding.

When Emily’s daughter throws more upheaval her way, she realizes the only way to get her life back on track is to reinvent it—and her actions will change everything.

Jodi Gibson’s latest is a fun, sentimental read, with a side of romance that is sure to appeal to fans of women’s fiction. Written with humor, full of likable characters, relatable situations, and home truths, it will also strike a familiar note with any mother who has put everyone else's needs ahead of her own.

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Just wanted to say that I've enjoyed this book so very much!
Yes, I can relate to Emily a lot already! Poor Emily! My heart just went out to her.
My favorite thing about this book is that's it is told from Emily's POV. I love it written this way. I can relate and connect with the protagonist better this way.
I'm giving this a 5 star already because there's not a dull moment in this book.
Gibson has done a remarkable job in bringing Emily and her family to life.
The one I felt sorry for most was Haley.
Why I feel sorry for her is because she's caught in the middle of all that's going on, poor kid.
Yet, at the same time, I just want to grind my teeth. She thinks it's all about her, and it isn't really.
I think Emily and Haley need to have a talk, so we'll see if that pans out.
I'm going to read on.
Yes, I have snickered some, and I know I want to cry in other places.
But this book is oh, so it's totally worth it!
I'm so very proud of Emily and the way she went about things.
I think though the character I was rooting most for was Mary Emily's and Lucy's mom. I won't say anything more because I'm not giving it away. Y'all just have to read this amazing book for yourselves!
The cover is so cute!. I just had to try this book out. I'm glad I did! I needed a fun and laid-back read.
I'm wasn't disappointed at all! I'll be adding it to my favorites.
5 stars for such an entertaining novel that kept my attention all the way! I loved loved every minute of it. I'm going to highly recommend this book.
My thanks for a copy of this book. I was NOT required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Emily Brown is doing her best to get by in life with her daughter and unemployed husband. One day, her credit cards are rejected and she discovers that he has lost everything. The next day, she unexpectedly loses her job. She needs to get away and decide what she is doing. She goes home to her parents who live in a small Australian town. She has to face past mistakes that she made in the town while deciding what to do about her unhappy teen-age daughter and her marriage. Emily has many decisions to make and fortunately she has the support of her parents. Meanwhile, Emily's mother faces a potential life threatening illness and has to think about what she wants in life. Jodi Gibson explores changes that are happening in this multi-generational family and in the end, I believe everyone makes the right decision. I believe this book will help readers think about their lives and the choices they need to make.

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