Harper Collins Blog Tour for: The Friendship List by Susan Mallery

I love a good read about friends in the summer, and this heart-warming story about two friends learning to discover all that life has to offer was just the thing I needed! Ellen and Unity have been best friends forever, but Ellen has sacrificed her personal life in order to be a wonderful single mom and Unity is still mourning the loss of her young husband in the military. They both are ready for a new lease on life and challenge each other to do things out of their comfort zone (hence the “friendship list”). This was a fun read, at times laugh-out-loud funny, and both these characters reminded me of myself when I was single at 35. One note – there is sex in this book. Just letting you know!!

Thank you for my review e-copy and for making me part of the tour!


Already a worldwide success in mass market and trade paperback formats, Susan Mallery’s newest hardcover is an emotional, witty, and heartfelt story about two best friends who are determined to help one another shake things up and live life to the fullest…only to discover that possibilities are everywhere–especially in the most unexpected of places.

Ellen and Unity have been best friends basically since birth, but they couldn’t be more different. Unity married her childhood sweetheart just after high school and became an Army wife, moving from base to base…until her husband’s shocking death in the line of duty leaves her a widow. Grief-stricken, it’s time for Unity to come back home to Ellen—the only person she can trust to help her rebuild her life. But Ellen has troubles of her own. Boys never seemed to notice Ellen…until one got her pregnant in high school and disappeared. Her son is now 17 and she’s wondering what to do with herself now that he’s heading off to college and he’s literally her entire world.

But now that Ellen and Unity are reunited, they’re done with their stale lives. It’s time to shake things up and start living again, knowing that they’ll always have one another to lean on. So they create a list of challenges they have to accomplish–everything from getting a tattoo to skydiving to staying out all night. And whoever completes the most challenges is the winner. But with new adventures and love just around the corner, there’s no such thing as losing…


SUSAN MALLERY is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of novels about the relationships that define women’s lives—family, friendship and romance. Library Journal says, “Mallery is the master of blending emotionally believable characters in realistic situations,” and readers seem to agree—forty million copies of her books have been sold worldwide. Her warm, humorous stories make the world a happier place to live.

Susan grew up in California and now lives in Seattle with her husband. She’s passionate about animal welfare, especially that of the two Ragdoll cats and adorable poodle who think of her as Mom.


Twitter: @susanmallery

Facebook: @susanmallery

Instagram: @susanmallery

Author website: https://www.susanmallery.com/

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Review: NORA WEBSTER by Colm Tóibín

I missed getting NORA WEBSTER on Net Galley, and heard a lot of great things about it, so I got it at the library. At the same time, some of my friends really disliked this book, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. NORA WEBSTER is the story of Nora, a young woman with four children who is widowed and living in Ireland in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. The story starts with the death of Nora’s beloved husband, Maurice, and follows her through her period of mourning and into the life that she eventually creates for herself.

This book moves at a rather slow pace, but I think that this is essential. Nora in the beginning is bogged down by grief, to the point where she can barely take care of her children. The pages felt so “grey” to me. I could feel her desolation. To be able to paint Nora’s inner self so perfectly through what surrounds her, to have the pages literally convey her mood, well – all I can say is that Tóibín is a gifted writer.

Nora gets a job and connects with some friends and her sisters. She also starts to sing. Eventually she slowly comes out of her shell – a shell which was created before Maurice died, as she had surrounded herself in her family and pretty much cut herself off to escape from her small town surroundings. She begins to realize that people actually respect her and are trying to help her.

I think one of my favorite parts of this story was when Nora auditioned for the Wexford choir. Her voice teacher had built her up so much and when she went, well, she pretty much was awful. Somehow, I loved the fact that she wasn’t amazing or wonderful. And I loved even more how she just carried on. She didn’t stop singing or blame them; she realized that her singing was for herself and it didn’t matter what others thought.

Nora reminds me of an Irish Olive Kitteridge. She’s not perfect or even terribly likable, but she is very human.

You can find this book at an Indie near you – I am an Indie Bound affiliate:

Find NORA WEBSTER at an Indie