Cranberry Queen - Kathleen DeMarco This book was a recommendation to me from two of my best GR buddies. These ladies and have a lot in common as far as reading goes, so I was excited when Jennifer said that she came across this book at a book store and really liked it, then when Colleen read it and also liked it. Sure enough, right off the bat, I could tell I was going to like the voice of the main character (the story was told in the first person). She was sarcastic, but it was a witty sarcasm, which I really enjoy. Three pages into the book, though, tragedy struck, and everything changed. The main character went from a brash, sarcastic, self doubter to a lost, confused victim. The more lost and confused she got, the more confused I became as a reader. I both liked and didn't like where the author was taking me. A perfect example is when Diana talks about being angry that people keep asking her how she is, but being angry later when they accept her "I'm fine" and she is left alone. On the one hand, this behavior seems childish and pathetic. On the other hand, I can see myself doing the same thing in a similar situation. There are many such places in the book where I feel good and bad at the same time.

I have always had a hard time with people who just accept being a victim, and as this seems to happen to Diana the book started to lag a bit for me. But just when I thought the author was going to wallow in the main character's lost withdrawal, Diana makes a rash decision and ends up in rural New Jersey with a cast of refreshingly flawed supporting characters. Rosie, Louisa, Jack, Fritz, and Billy really made the book for me. I became very vested in how they were all going to interact (which, by the way, was in a very Big Chill sort of way).

In the end, Diana finally mans up and gets her life back together, and things end up with the author alluding to a Happily Ever After ending. Here again, I both liked it and didn't like it. It was satisfying that Diana was able to work through her issues, in fact, when I finished the book I actually sighed with contentment. On the other hand...I felt that it took her too long to get to this point (although chronologically it was only two days, lol) and that the happy ending was just a little to formulaic.

I am giving this book 3.75 stars, but not 4. Although I liked the story and the supporting characters were flawed enough to make them interesting, the story lagged for me in places.