McMillan’s sequel to her popular Waiting To Exhale picks up 15 years later in the lives of the four Phoenix friends—Savannah, Gloria, Bernadine and Robin—still looking for love and happiness as they hit middle age.
It’s 2005 and each of the women is facing a crisis. Formerly overweight Gloria has found domestic bliss until her beloved husband dies in a drive-by shooting on their anniversary. Then she learns she’s about to lose the lease on her wildly successful salon, and that her son Tarik’s unlikable wife turns out to be a child-abusing, law-breaking adulteress. Gloria starts packing the pounds back on. News producer Savannah is newly lonely after divorcing her husband of ten years because she’s bored with him, although his addiction to Internet porn also factors in. Instead of allowing her hard-up sister’s troubled son to visit, Savannah treats herself to a jaunt to Paris, but not before she has a dream blind date with a handsome retired doctor. Shopaholic Robin is the never-married mother of 15-year-old Sparrow, a nauseatingly perfect daughter. (Actually, the fact that none of these women have children who talk back or rebel or disappoint like real children may be the real fantasy wish fulfillment for readers, not the sexy romances.) How Robin’s salary as an underwriter affords her the luxuries and savings she has amassed is glossed over, but then her company downsizes her out of her job. Soon after reconnecting with a “blast from the past” who has shed 40 pounds to become the love of her life, she decides to become a teacher. Bernadine is still recovering from the annulment of her second marriage six years earlier. Her “husband” was a bigamist who swindled her out of a chunk of her alimony settlement from first husband John. She’s closed her café and become addicted to pills, but John and their kids support her when she goes into rehab.
Full of sitcom moments and windy dialogue—aging chick lit at its most superficial.