“New friends can be found in unexpected places. For Bridget and Amy, that place was the cancer ward of an Anchorage hospital. Now, as each struggles to overcome loss, they lean on each other for support—sharing suppers, laughter and tears.
Bridget and Amy aren’t about to let hardship knock them down—Bridget plans to return to her veterinarian school studies, Amy to her position as a second-grade teacher—but neither feels quite ready. And so the Sunday Potluck Club is born, a way for Bridget, Amy, and other women who have lost a loved one to find solace and understanding. Savoring favorite dishes while sharing memories and the comfort of connection, the members of the Sunday Potluck Club nourish body and soul.
As weeks go by and the group grows in unforeseen ways, both Bridget and Amy are inspired to find greater purpose. Amy reaches out to a student whose father bravely faces his own struggle. Bridget volunteers at the local animal shelter, rehabilitating dogs whose unconditional love will bring others a chance to heal. And with the help of two special men, Bridget and Amy are realizing that there’s always room at the table for love and rekindled joy.” – Amazon
Although The Sunday Potluck Club by Melissa Storm is about four women dealing with their parents having had cancer and three of them dying, this book focuses the most on Amy, with Bridget getting a larger share of the story too, compared to Nichole and Hazel.
The book had me crying at the beginning and the end, but the middle didn’t have as strong of a pull on me. Having had cancer myself (currently 10 years in remission) and having lost my mother to ALS five years ago, I quickly found a kinship with these women.
I was really hoping for more story with all four of the ladies involved and a lot less of Amy continually lamenting how she doesn’t deserve to find love so quickly after her mom’s death. Some parts of her new relationship with a student’s father, Trent (who also recently lost his wife to cancer) were cute and uplifting, but there was a lot that was repetitive and dragged the story down for me. And for me, there was a huge red flag that went up with Trent when Amy was unable to keep a promise because she had to help Bridget out, who was in a crisis. Trent’s reaction was so violent and extreme, and I know he’s grieving and people can lash out, but it just had domestic abuse written all over it to me.
Bridget’s part of the story showed another way that people grieve and I really appreciate how realistic Storm was able to write it. The extra touch with the animals at the shelter added a wonderful layer to the story for me, and I was happy to see that book two in the series, Wednesday Walks and Wags, will focus more on Bridget and the animals.
Although I found myself skimming a lot when it came to Amy and Trent’s interactions, I would read the next book if I was looking for something light with a chance of tears.
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