Marriage Vacation by Pauline Turner Brooks

*Thank you to Simon & Schuster (Millennial Print) for letting me review this novel.

Rating: 4.5/5

“If this were a movie I would probably be a man, the husband returning from a long trip away. Wives and mothers, in fiction and in real life, don’t leave their families. But it wasn’t a movie. It was my life and I was fucking terrified.”

If you love the show Younger, then you won’t want to miss this novel. In the TV Land hit series, the book publisher’s wife leaves him and their girls to go find herself after feeling as if her life has no meaning after years of being a stay-at-home mom. While she is on this trip, she writes this novel about taking a “marriage vacation.” When she comes back home, her husband’s company publishes this book, which in real life Simon & Schuster had published with a ghost author. I love how they used the inspiration from Younger and turned it into an actual novel.

Synopsis: When Kate goes on a trip to California to attend a college friend’s wedding, she runs into a woman that makes her realize what she’s been missing since completing her MFA program at Columbia. Kate decides right then and there to meet her friend in Thailand for a much needed getaway. She wants to start writing again because she feels as if this part of her has been missing ever since she had babies. Her husband is making a name for himself in the book publishing world, and she feels like her hopes and dreams have been put on the back burner. But no more.

She arrives in a resort located in the middle of Thailand. From there she meets amazing people that help her discover the person she wants to be and will continue to be in the future. But the sad thing is she can’t go home until she’s fulfilled, so her marriage starts to crumble from her being thousands of miles away. The drama continues throughout her year long sabbatical, which she documents in this novel.

What is so inspiring about all of this is Kate knew she was struggling and decided this trip was the best thing for her. She met lifelong friends, helped people in need and found herself again. She knew by doing this trip she would be a better mother, wife and friend. And I find that commendable. You will be rooting for Kate throughout the entire novel because a lot of people feel like her but couldn’t do what she did. By doing this trip, she practically saved her and her family’s life. This novel should be on your TBR list immediately.

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