Title: All The Good Parts
Author: Loretta Nyhan
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Contemporary, Chicklit, Romance
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Release Date: Sept. 20, 2016
Ratings: 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Synopsis: “At thirty-nine, Leona Accorsi is broke, single, back in school, and living in her sister Carly’s basement. She’s perfectly content being quirky Auntie Lee to Carly’s four children. That is, until Leona’s doctor tells her that if she wants to have a child, she’d better do it now.
Leona does want a baby. She always has, but the circumstances have never been right. Now she has a huge decision to make: face motherhood on her own or risk missing out on its rewards.
Unfortunately, she’s let her romantic life go stagnant. She barely even knows any single men. She has just a few prospects: a Vietnam vet and partial amputee, his intimidating son, the sweet but troubled man who tutors her niece, and a fellow nursing student she’s never actually met.
As Leona discovers more about each one, she realizes any of them could be the right man for the job. The more important question is, has she become the right woman?”
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First of all, I’d like to thank Netgalley and Lake Union Publishing for providing me with an ARC of All The Good Parts in exchange for an honest review. This story tells us about a 39-year-old woman named Leona Accorsi a.k.a. Aunty Lee who seems to be missing something in her life until her good old friend and doctor tells her that if she wants to have a baby, she’d better do it soon. However, with Leona’s passive personality, stagnant lovelife and financial situation, does she have what it takes to raise a child?
I finished All The Good Parts weeks ago but didn’t have the time to write a review about it until now. For me, women’s fiction and chicklit have always been my source of humor and stress-relief, and I’m glad that this book gave me just that. While the book may be heavy on introspection and adult issues, Nyhan inserts just the right amount of humor so it never gets dull or boring.
As the main character, Leona is flawed, quirky and easy to like. She reminds me a lot of that heroine from the Taiwanese drama called Fated to Love You, who has no real ambition in life and lets other people dictate her actions. But like the heroine, Leona eventually grows a spine, finds her confidence and discovers what she truly wants out of her life, even if it wasn’t easy getting to that stage. Along the way, she struggles, hesitates, gets countered and is questioned at every turn. She keeps weighing all the pros and cons of her decisions and decides whether she could really live with the consequences. Her sister Carly was always there to point out all the hard truths to Leona, even if those things were something that Leona didn’t want to hear or never even considered before. But even though Carly makes a whole lot of valid points, there were other times when I just wanted to slap her because of her bitchiness sometimes. Other characters that I loved here are Jerry, Darryl and Paul.
One of the things I also liked about this book is that it isn’t heavy on romance. Finding love isn’t Leona’s ultimate goal – having a baby was. But since she can’t afford freezing her eggs and in vitro fertilization, she’s left with no other choice but to find a sperm donor – or else, give up her dream of having a baby. So together with her sister Carly and her niece, they started considering all her options and made a list of possible prospects. In the end, there were only four people they could think of. One is her niece’s tutor who is essentially homeless (my least favorite of them all); another is Leona’s client who is a 68-year-old Vietnam vet and a partial amputee; another is her client’s intimidating asshole son who doesn’t approve of Leona’s closeness to his father; and the last is a guy from her online classes she’s never even met before. She even adds her own brother-in-law to that list. It was a thrilling experience to wait which guy Leona would choose and I was super happy that she chose the guy I was rooting for. But if you asked me which of these guys I would probably miss the least, I’d definitely say Garrett.
Ultimately, words aren’t enough to express how much I loved this book! Everything from the cover down to the storyline, Leona’s character development, the writing style, some pretty striking quotes here and there, the unexpected twists and turns – I think Loretta Nyhan has just turned into one of my favorite WF authors of all time. All The Good Parts was so inspiring it forces you to rethink everything about what true womanhood entails. But the main thing you could learn from here is that no matter how old you are, it is never too late to change your life.
About the Cover: “We wanted something modern and eye-catching. The bursts of color reflect a new life for Leona!” – Loretta Nyhan, author of All the Good Parts
I hope this review has made you want to pick up this book guys. I can guarantee that you won’t regret it. 😊😊😊
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