He got the second home and the Porsche. She got the kids and a broken heart. Now Jackie Laurens, post-divorce and heading toward the big four-oh, is on vacation in sunny Hawaii and facing her upcoming birthday-alone. But not for long. She's soon falling for Kai, her gorgeous, much younger surf instructor, and their wild passionate fling becomes the biggest surprise of her life.
Back home in Seattle, Jackie has to struggle with single parenthood and her memories. Kai hasn't forgotten her, yet thousands of miles of ocean and an age difference that feels even bigger lie between them. And, of course, Jackie's friends disapprove. When a choice must be made, can she, will she risk everything for her chance at happiness?
I want to go to Hawaii so bad. I've been there once for a layover on the way to Malaysia but that doesn't count. Therefore, I adore books where I get to armchair travel to this spot. Luckily for me this book allowed me to travel several times throughout the course of the story. Jackie's story, while not one I can relate to, was enjoyable to read and it was really nice to read how she was able to finally come out of her shell. She got to enjoy herself and discover that there was a part of her that existed that didn't have to have ties with her ex husband.
I did like Kai, though at times I was a bit worried for Jackie's sake that he wasn't as faithful as she was. Of course, we only got the perspective from Jackie so we don't know what was going on meanwhile back in Hawaii with Kai. Without spoiling the story, I felt that an extremely crucial situation in the book could have been handled differently. At the very least, anyone involved in the situation should have been told regardless of the outcome and by the end of the story, it is not mentioned if it ever will be. There are a few sex scenes in the book but there's nothing too graphic.
I really did not like Jackie's ex husband. He was the typical ex-husband who has no problem leaving his wife for a younger woman but God forbid she wants to start having a life. Jackie should be glad she's not married to him anymore and his new girlfriend must live in a bubble if she thinks she's found the perfect guy. I just wanted to hit him several times. I also wanted to strangle Jackie's friends. Right from the get-go, I knew they were not the best friends for her. As soon as Anne calls and tells her she can't go on the trip with her and gives a flimsy excuse about her husband, I knew that we were dealing with some weak women. Instead of being happy for her or at least giving her sound good advice, her so called friends keep bringing her down and keep trying to discourage Jackie. I don't know if it was jealousy or just plain cattiness but I got really mad at them.
Overall I really enjoyed this book as I have other Jane Porter books. It's a light funny read and I would describe it as older chick lit, but not quite hen lit yet.
By the way I was able to catch some of the Lifetime movie that was based on this book. Let me tell you the book is SO much better than the movie. From the 30 minutes I was able to view, I was deeply disappointed in how they changed Kai's character to Kyle and how Heather Locklear looks way older than 40 and heavily botoxed. That is all.
Flirting With Forty by Jane Porter is published by 5 Spot (2006)
This review copy was provided by the publisher