I received a copy of When Girlfriends Take Chances by Savannah Page in exchange for my honest opinion.
The latest in a series of books about a group of six women living in Seattle, I’ll admit that I had mixed feelings about this book. For starters, I think it’s necessary to read the earlier books in the series before picking up When Girlfriends Take Chances. While Page was clever in filling new readers in on the highlights of each character without overdoing the details and boring longtime fans, I felt that I didn’t really have enough detail about each woman’s story to really connect to any of them, and it took awhile to get them all straight.
Perhaps this is why I struggled to warm to protagonist Emily. On the surface, I thought we had one big thing in common – an insatiable wanderlust! However, as I continued to read I started to feel that she was a little two-dimensional… Unsure of where she is going in life, she’s wavering between taking off overseas again and trying to settle down. In itself, that’s a recognisable feeling. However, her apparent disdain of those who don’t share her love of travel, and the fact that her life is largely funded by her trust fund (although she prefers to spend it on travel than flashy possessions, which is admirable), were a little off putting. That said, she did read as a loyal friend, which was definitely a redeeming feature.
The actual plot of the book was entertaining – although the feminist in me takes issue with how important it is to the women that Emily find a man to ‘settle down’ with. I liked how the different stories intertwined, and took some comfort in the fact that these (albeit fictional) ladies remain friends despite their markedly different personalities. I also liked how Page was able to use a number of different locations for the story that added new layers; the start-up shop of Emily’s friend, her new book club, her shabby flat and the homes of her friends.
Overall, I think my opinion of the book would have been very different if I had read all of the books in the series. The writing style was light and easy – a perfect beach read – and reader’s will likely identify with one of the many characters. Luckily for you, you’ve read this post and now know to start at he beginning of the series. You can pick up the first three books in the series here. When I get a chance, I’m going to start at the beginning and read about their adventures from the start!