Blueprints by Barbara Delinsky

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Blueprints by Barbara Delinsky

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Category: Women's Fiction
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: Intelligent women's fiction which takes a sympathetic look at the question of how women's age is viewed as well as the difficulties of suddenly taking on a child. Recommended.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 408 Date: February 2016
Publisher: Piatkus
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0349405049

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Everyone - even Jamie MacAfee - thinks that her life is perfect. She's engaged to Brad, a lawyer with her family's building firm and is sure that she'll manage to set a wedding date as soon as work pressure eases up. She's employed by the family firm too, as an architect, and appears as one of the presenters on a television renovation show. Her best friend is her mother who's a master carpenter and the host on the same television show - and Caroline has managed to build up her confidence again after a messy divorce. What can go wrong?

The problem with being the mother of an adult child is that you are, almost by definition old. Caroline is 56 and the producers of the television show decide that she's too old and they want Jamie to take over as the host. The idea (well, it was more of a fait acompli, let's be honest) was sprung on Jamie and announced to Caroline in a manner which made it sound as though Jamie had been complicit in getting her ousted. Then there's a tragic accident and Jamie finds herself 'mother' to her infant half brother when his parents are killed in an accident. Worst of all, Brad is obviously not at all keen on taking on young Tad.

Barbara Delinsky writes intelligent women's fiction - dealing with issues which push themselves to the forefront in real life. Here it's age - how women are viewed in employment, in the media and in relationships. When are you too old to have a sex life? Who is it who decrees that there comes a point when a woman is too old to front up a television programme? Delinsky's not a one-trick pony though - there's also a look at the question of taking on another family's child. Even with the best will in the world how do you cope with a toddler when your only experience has been as an aunt, who (like grandparents) could hand the child back when the going got tough? Or messy. How do you change your life when you've been used to living in a sparkling white home?

It's a good story and it's thought provoking - you really wonder how it's going to work out and it's going to appeal to fans of Jodi Picoult and Diane Chamberlain.

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy of the book to the Bookbag.

If you'd like to read more by Barbara Delinsky we can recommend Sweet Salt Air and |Escape.

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