Thursday, February 26, 2015

Book Review: New Uses for Old Boyfriends by Beth Kendrick

Members of the Vise Library were selected to participate in a blog tour for New Uses for Old Boyfriends.  We received a copy of Beth Kendrick's book for an honest review.

About the book:

After growing up in privilege and marrying into money, Lila Alders has gotten used to the good life. But when her happily-ever-after implodes, Lila must return to Black Dog Bay, the tiny seaside town where she grew up. She’s desperate for a safe haven, but everything has changed over the past ten years. Her family’s fortune is gone—and her mother is in total denial. It’s up to Lila to take care of everything...but she can barely take care of herself.

The former golden girl of Black Dog Bay struggles to reinvent herself by opening a vintage clothing boutique. But even as Lila finds new purpose for outdated dresses and tries to reunite with her ex, she realizes that sometimes it’s too late for old dreams. She’s lost everything she thought she needed but found something—someone—she desperately wants. A boy she hardly noticed has grown up into a man she can’t forget...and a second chance has never felt so much like first love.
I love when fun, enjoyable books teach us lessons on life.  New Uses for Old Boyfriends does just that!  Lila Alders has always kept up appearances and done all of the things that were expected of her.  She married someone that provided her with a lifestyle other people might be jealous of and had a career on TV.  Her life takes a turn for the worst when her contract with her job is not renewed and her husband informs her that he has found someone else to be with.  So Lila packs up her life in her newly purchased FUV (her SUV that she purchased to stick it to her ex-husband) and heads back to her hometown of Black Dog Bay.  Lila's mother, Daphne, still lives there, but is struggling with her own problems.  Daphne is a recent widow and on top of missing her husband is having a lot of financial difficulties.  

Lila learns that her mother has spent waaaaayyyy beyond her means and does not see a way out of the hole.  Meanwhile, Lila's old high school flame, Ben, has come back to town and her mother will do anything to match them back up.  Lila (without the help of her mother, who is in total denial) tries to help clean out the home she grew up in in preparation to sell it.  She discovers a ton of priceless vintage clothing her mother has accumulated over the years and she has an idea to save her mom and herself.  Through a ton of good luck (thanks Ben!) and stars aligning (you'll find out the help of an old high school classmate that she doesn't even remember, Malcolm, that helps make things possible), the two women set out to start a vintage clothing store that will attract the wealthier tourists of Black Dog Bay.  Things start looking up for Lila and Daphne, but unfortunately they have another stroke of bad luck come their way.  I won't give away the details of that, but they both have to learn about themselves again and learn to pick up the pieces.    

Beth Kendrick wrote a great book to continue the Black Dog Series.  Each one can be a stand alone book, but it is always fun to see glimpses of other characters make their way into each book.  I really cared about these characters and felt for them when things didn't go their way.  I loved how Lila learned not to do what was expected of her but rather what she really wants.  Daphne always wants Lila to project an outside image that just doesn't seem to fit Lila anymore.  Lila also discovers to take her life into her own hands and take action to turn things for her and her mom around.  She is able to also teach her mom a few lessons along the way and Daphne discovers she is capable of doing things she never though possible.  I love how this book teaches the reader that even though a person's circumstances seem to be insurmountable, if they just take the next five minutes at a time, then they can do it.  I feel like Lila taught me that you can have more inner strength than you think is possible of yourself.  Even though Lila and Daphne have a lot of troubles in this book, they are able to have a lot of fun and gain great new friends along the way.  This book was sad, but hilarious due to the FUV (I love that!) and Malcolm (who was in the military) and Lila's covert operations language they use to communicate.   
I am so glad that I had an opportunity to read and review New Uses for Old Boyfriends and I am sure once you pick up this book, you will too! :)

Buy the book:

Praise for the book:

"Beth Kendrick has written a sharp, sassy, surprisingly emotional story that will make readers laugh out loud from page one and sigh from the heart at the end.  Light and lovely perfection!"
—Roxanne St. Claire, New York Times bestselling author on CURE FOR THE COMMON BREAKUP

“A smart, funny spin on happily-ever-after!"
—Beth Harbison, New York Times bestselling author

"Kendrick writes with a wicked sense of humor and great wisdom about the power of friendship [and] the importance of true love."
The Chicago Tribune

About the author:

Beth Kendrick is the author of The Week Before the Wedding, The Lucky Dog Matchmaking Service, and Nearlyweds, which was turned into a Hallmark Channel original movie. She lives in Arizona with her two rescue dogs, but she loves to vacation at the Delaware shore, where she goes to Funland, eats boardwalk fries, and wishes that the Whinery really existed.

Connect with the author:


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