The Young Wives Club by Julie Pennell
Everyone has that handful of people who you call when things are bad, when you are happy, when you need to vent…. people who lift you up when you are at your darkest and are always ready with wine on hand to have your back for whatever life may throw your way. This is the focus of Julie Pennell’s wonderful debut novel The Young Wives Club, a heart-warming tribute to the girl squad, that follows 4 best friends as they navigate the early years of marriage. I picked this book up after reading Kourtney’s Bookshelf’s glowing review and also because the author was raised in Shreveport and she still has family that live in New Iberia (which is about a 20 minute drive from me). While the book is definitely light and fun, it also explores some hard topics – maintaining trust in marriages, failed dreams, and starting over. I will say that even though the title clearly states that these are Young Wives, I was surprised at how very young the wives actually were. But do not let that deter you from reading. There are so many wonderful quotes throughout the book and Pennell really struck a nerve with me with the line “you should never feel guilty about doing things for you. When you love yourself, it’ll be so much easier for you to love someone else.” As a working mother and as a wife this is something I constantly struggle with – finding the balance to get it all done while not losing myself and the things that I want. It is so necessary to have your tribe around you, looking out for you, cheering you on and reminding you to do a little self-care every now and then. Julie Pennell’s book is a lovely homage to friendship and the ties that bind and I can not wait to read what she writes next. 4 happy stars.