Review: A Girl’s Guide to Moving On – Debbie Macomber

Posted 9 March, 2016 by Linda @ (un)Conventional Bookworms in Reviews / 16 Comments

*I received a free copy of A Girl's Guide to Moving On from Ballantine Books via Netgalley. This has in no way influenced my voluntary review, which is honest and unbiased *

Review: A Girl’s Guide to Moving On – Debbie MacomberA Girl's Guide to Moving On by Debbie Macomber
Series: New Beginnings #2
Published by Ballantine Books on 23 February 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Romance
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
3.5 Stars

In this powerful and uplifting novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber, a mother and her daughter-in-law bravely leave their troubled marriages and face the challenge of starting over. Leaning on each other, Nichole and Leanne discover that their inner strength and capacity for love are greater than they ever imagined.
When Nichole discovers that her husband, Jake, has been unfaithful, the illusion of her perfect life is indelibly shattered. While juggling her young son, a new job, and volunteer work, Nichole meets Rocco, who is the opposite of Jake in nearly every way. Though blunt-spoken and rough around the edges, Rocco proves to be a dedicated father and thoughtful friend. But just as their relationship begins to blossom, Jake wagers everything on winning Nichole back—including their son Owen’s happiness. Somehow, Nichole must find the courage to defy her fears and follow her heart, with far-reaching consequences for them all.
Leanne has quietly ignored her husband’s cheating for decades, but is jolted into action by the echo of Nichole’s all-too-familiar crisis. While volunteering as a teacher of English as a second language, Leanne meets Nikolai, a charming, talented baker from Ukraine. Resolved to avoid the heartache and complications of romantic entanglements, Leanne nonetheless finds it difficult to resist Nikolai’s effusive overtures—until an unexpected tragedy tests the very fabric of her commitments.
An inspiring novel of friendship, reinvention, and hope, A Girl’s Guide to Moving On affirms the ability of every woman to forge a new path, believe in love, and fearlessly find happiness.

Adult - (un)Conventional Bookviews Contemporary - (un)Conventional Bookviews

A Girl’s Guide to Moving On is a sweet, tender and sometimes sad story about hope. And about love. And how to move on after a divorce.

Review - (un)Conventional BookviewsPicking ones life back up and fit the pieces together after a divorce can be harder than it seems, and for both Nichole and Leanne, the new beginning was emotionally difficult. A Girl’s Guide to Moving On started with the two of them needing something to help them get back into the world once more, and so they made a list of things they should do. Let go, help others to help themselves, love themselves so they could love others as well. The relationship between Nichole and Leanne was the most honest and balanced relationship in the story, and I loved that Leann was Nichole’s mother in law. They got divorced at the same time, Nichole gave Leann the courage she needed to leave her husband of 35 years, with most of those years spent knowing he was cheating on her.

In many ways, A Girl’s Guide to Moving on is an empowering story, even if both women have some set-backs both when it comes to their ex-husbands and new people they meet. I found the flow to be quite stilted in the beginning, and I think the reason is that Nichole and Leann each have chapters where they share their thoughts, their experiences and what happened in their lives lately. It was kind of like a delayed stream of consciousness, and it took me a while to get into the story. It was good to see that they were holding each other up, doing their best to move forward, even if there were many things in their lives that also tied them to their past, and their cheating husbands.

While A Girl’s Guide to Moving On is part of a series, it can be read as a standalone. Written in dual points of views, first person perspective, both Leanne and Nichole share their inner thoughts and feelings. The story unfolds at a fairly slow pace, and is in past tense.

Fave Quotes - (un)Conventional Bookviews

Wile married, my life had revolved around Sean; I kept our home, entertained on his behalf, and managed our social calendar. Basically, I’d seen to him and the needs of his career to the point that I’d lost my own identity. I found pleasure in discovering the things I enjoyed.

I didn’t know when the tears started. They came unbidden, unwelcome. I thought I’d shed all the tears I had in me over the failure of this marriage. But I was wrong.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

Linda @ (un)Conventional Bookworms

About Linda @ (un)Conventional Bookworms

Linda is an English as foreign language teacher and has a Master's degree in English Language and Literature. She's an avid reader, blogger, compulsive one-clicker and a genre omnivore. Ever since she learnt how to read she has been seen with a book or two in her hands everywhere she goes.

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16 responses to “Review: A Girl’s Guide to Moving On – Debbie Macomber

  1. I like that their story was empowering but I’m sorry that the flow was bumpy. It’s a very interesting dynamic that Leanne was Nichole’s mother-in-law…but it’s nice they were close enough that they could provide the support they both obviously needed. I’ve yet to read Macomber, Lexxie. Some day…some day… Have a wonderful Wednesday, my friend! **BIG HUGS**

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    • It was a nice part of the story that Leanne and Nichole were in the same situation, and that Leanne was the MIL. They were very close, and Leanne, especially was very conscious of how her son was acting, and that she wanted to be in Nichole’s life.

  2. A bumpy flow can be annoying, and dual perspective is tricky – I don’t always like that. It sounds like an okay read though.

  3. Sorry about the slow/bumpy beginning, but it does sound like it gets better! I have never read anything by Macomber, but I know she has TONS. haha Glad you can read this as a standalone too.


  4. I used to read everything this author wrote until I realized how unrealistic she was when it came to romance and no sex at all before marriage-ever. It got to be so obviously old fashioned that I quit reading her. And I don’t expect sex scenes in every book, it’s not necessary, but it’s like it doesn’t exist outside of marriage in all her books, and if it does, than something goes really wrong for the woman. It could just fade to black and it would be fine. Okay off my soapbox now! All that being said, sorry it wasn’t a better read for you!

    • Yeah, no sex before marriage is not something I find to be overly realistic if it’s something that actually happens in each and every book, Lorna. I haven’t read that many of her books, only a couple, and I enjoyed the message in this story quite a bit, even if I had some trouble with the pacing 🙂

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