Great Escape Book: ‘Forgotten’ by Catherine McKenzie

Many thanks to Thien-Kim from I’m Not the Nanny for today’s guest post:

I’m not living the life I imagined back in my college days. I never dreamed about working from home and raising two young kids in my early 30s. Heck, I originally didn’t even plan on getting married until I turned 30. While I wouldn’t change chasing my toddler at the park or typing at my desk into the wee hours of the night, I wonder what I might be doing today if I had gone into technology instead of the arts. Luckily, I can makeover my life vicariously through the new novel Forgotten by Catherine McKenzie who also wrote Arranged and Spin.

In Forgotten, Emma is a young lawyer on track to make partner at her firm. To honor her dead mother’s wishes, she takes a leave and vacations in Africa for a month. One month turns into six after she falls ill and is trapped in a remote village after a catastrophic earthquake. Excited to return home and her life, Emma is stunned to discover that everyone assumed she was dead.

Everything she worked for was gone: her job, her apartment and perhaps even her boyfriend. Instead she has to share her old apartment with its new renter, a handsome and talented photographer who has his own troubles. Emma has to decide if she should reclaim the life she left behind or start anew.

When I read novels like this, I want to yell at our heroine: “Ditch the boring life and go after the hot guy!” However, that would make for a very short, unsatisfying read. Though it might seem obvious to the reader whom Emma should fall for, author McKenzie knows that Emma needs to explore and grow before realizing what we already know.

McKenzie surrounds Emma with an entertaining of friends. As Emma’s best friend, Stephanie’s optimist and fun loving nature keeps Emma’s seriousness at bay. Every woman needs a best friend like Stephanie, who knows exactly how to get you out of a rut. Then there’s Emily, Emma’s frienemy at the law firm. Not only does Emily vie to make partner at the firm, she’s got her eye Emma’s love interest as well. The different dynamics of female friendships (or lack thereof) are well covered in the story.

Forgotten is the perfect novel to escape the drudgeries of dirty dishes and stinky diapers. Curl up with a glass of wine and you can imagine what it’d be like to make over your life without leaving your couch.

How would you make over your life?

Thien-Kim might consider making over her life if Martha Stewart or Oprah wanted to adopt her. She might even consider becoming letting Neil Patrick Harris’ be her gay boyfriend. In the meantime, you can find her blogging her multicultural parenting adventures at I’m Not the Nanny. Visit her virtual book club From Left to Write for more of Thien-Kim’s book reviews.

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  1. by Brandi

    On October 24, 2012 at 4:29 pm

    I don’t know how I’d makeover my life! I just moved across the country for love, so my life is already pretty different than it was just a few months ago. Maybe I’d makeover some things from my past, though…

  2. by Janine

    On October 25, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    This sounds really interesting – thanks for the great review that gets me thinking, without giving too much away!

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