#BookReview: The Year We Turned Forty by Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke

Reviewer: Samantha


the year we turned fortySummary:

If you could repeat one year of your life, what would you do differently? This heartwarming and hilarious novel from the authors of The Status of All Things and Your Perfect Life features three best friends who get the chance to return to the year they turned forty—the year that altered all of their lives, in ways big and small—and also get the opportunity to change their future.

Jessie loves her son Lucas more than anything, but it tears her up inside that he was conceived in an affair that ended her marriage to a man she still loves, a man who just told her he’s getting remarried. This time around, she’s determined to bury the secret of Lucas’ paternity, and to repair the fissures that sent her wandering the first time.

Gabriela regrets that she wasted her most fertile years in hot pursuit of a publishing career. Yes, she’s one of the biggest authors in the world, but maybe what she really wanted to create was a family. With a chance to do it again, she’s focused on convincing her husband, Colin, to give her the baby she desires.

Claire is the only one who has made peace with her past: her twenty-two year old daughter, Emily, is finally on track after the turmoil of adolescence, and she’s recently gotten engaged, with the two carat diamond on her finger to prove it. But if she’s being honest, Claire still fantasizes about her own missed opportunities: a chance to bond with her mother before it was too late, and the possibility of preventing her daughter from years of anguish. Plus, there’s the man who got away—the man who may have been her one true love.

But it doesn’t take long for all three women to learn that re-living a life and making different decisions only leads to new problems and consequences—and that the mistakes they made may, in fact, have been the best choices of all…


This was another audiobook that I enjoyed on my (now very hot) walks with my dog. Liz Fenton and Liz Steinke are fabulous authors and I love that they co-write their books. I would never know by reading that two different authors are penning the words, as their creations flow along beautifully. While I maybe had a small fear of will I be able to connect with characters older than myself, that fear was quickly shot down from chapter one. Three friends, deep regrets, and the chance to go back in time and try to make better decisions. Would you go back? That is the exact question I was asking my group of girlfriends. Would you go back? What would you want to try to do over? I love novels that make me talk to other people, and this definitely was one of them. I found myself holding my breath several times while listening to this enjoyable narration, wondering if the decision to redo the year they turned forty would give the women a better outcome – or destroy them. The strong thread of friendship, family and the magical realism sprinkled throughout made me one satisfied reader from beginning to end.

5 stars

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