Monday, December 8, 2014

Early Review: Girl Before A Mirror by Liza Palmer

Girl Before a Mirror
by Liza Palmer
Read: October 17 - 18, 2014
Published: January 27, 2015 by William Morrow Paperbacks
Source: Edelweiss (THANK YOU, HC!)
Tags: Contemporary Adult, romance novels, 

Find: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository 

The author of Conversations with a Fat Girl—optioned for HBO—returns with the hilarious and heartfelt story of a woman who must learn how to be the heroine of her own life-a journey that will teach her priceless lessons about love, friendship, family, work, and her own heart

An account executive in a Mad Men world, Anna Wyatt is at a crossroads. Recently divorced, she’s done a lot of emotional housecleaning, including a self-imposed dating sabbatical. But now that she’s turned forty, she’s struggling to figure out what her life needs. Brainstorming to win over an important new client, she discovers a self-help book—Be the Heroine, Find Your Hero—that offers her unexpected insights and leads her to a most unlikely place: a romance writers’ conference. If she can sign the Romance Cover Model of the Year Pageant winner for her campaign—and meet the author who has inspired her to take control of her life—she’ll win the account. 

For Anna, taking control means taking chances, including getting to know Sasha, her pretty young colleague on the project, and indulging in a steamy elevator ride with Lincoln Mallory, a dashing financial consultant she meets in the hotel. When the conference ends, Anna and Lincoln must decide if their intense connection is strong enough to survive outside the romantic fantasy they’ve created. Yet Lincoln is only one of Anna’s dilemmas. Now that her campaign is off the ground, others in the office want to steal her success, and her alcoholic brother, Ferdie, is spiraling out of control. 

To have the life she wants-to be happy without guilt, to be accepted for herself, to love and to be loved, to just be—she has to put herself first, accept her imperfections, embrace her passions, and finally be the heroine of her own story.

I picked up Girl Before A Mirror after I read a book that nearly broke me emotionally (though it was excellent), and I was desperate for something completely different. Thank goodness, I chose this one. I'm not sure I can even articulate how amazing and affirming this book was for me. But was is the best mix of fun and empowering, and I think you all should put this on TBR. 

Let me tell you some things I loved about Girl Before A Mirror

1) This book is funny. Heroine Anna made me laugh so much. I had such a great time being inside of her head. But not only that, I felt like I was part of her journey through this book: the amusing, awkward, heartbreaking and soul searching moments. 

2) This book highlights friendships, especially female friendships. I loved the friendship that develops between Anna and her much younger colleague Sasha. They don't seem like they would be a great match at first. Sasha looks like a model and clearly got her job because of that and not her abilities. Anna's been working hard for years to gain the position she has. But Anna 
recognizes Sasha's talent - and insecurities - and takes her under her wing. It's not what I expected Anna to do, but I shouldn't have doubted her. Their relationship was one of my many favorite parts of the story. 

3) This book celebrates romance novels, and argues that you can learn a lot from them. 
But also challenges you to become your own hero. If you've ever felt judged for what you read, or like Anna, been a judger yourself, this is the book for you. 

4) These characters go to a romance novel convention to judge a male cover model 
competition. All sorts of hilarity happens there, but Anna also goes through intense personal reflection at this time. I loved that Anna sees the event as silly at first, but her time there changes her perspective on who she is and what she believes she is able to accomplish. 

5) This book is thoughtful and empowering. Anna goes through a huge emotional, personal and professional journey, as she examines herself and her life, her family and her friends. I was moved and inspired. 

6) Have you notice that I haven't even talked about the romance yet? Don't worry, you'll find swoons in here as well. The romance Anna finds in this book doesn't begin in a way that she or I expected. But these two are great for each other, and though the attraction begins quickly, neither is afraid to take the time they need to grow. The romance is a piece of this story that I enjoyed, but it is only one part of why I loved this book. Thankfully, no love triangles or angst to be found! 

After loving this book and Nowhere But Home, I have become a Liza Palmer fangirl. Her stories make me feel both strong and celebrated as a woman. Even if you are mostly a YA reader, don't miss this one! 

Love Triangle Factor: None
Cliffhanger Scale: Standalone


  1. This is so exciting. I can't wait to read this book. I'm a Liza P fangirl too, I think. I've read three of her other books and I've loved them all. One of my favorite things about her books is that they're all different! She branches out and writes different stories (or at least the three that I have read are very different) which is very neat considering many of the authors I enjoy do tend to stay within a particular set-type of story.

    This sounds delightful. And I'm thinking I may need to read it soon given some that I'm reading currently and have recently finished. Thanks so much for the review - I can't remember having read one before now, so this is a joy to read, friend! (:

  2. Everything about this book is perfect. I've already reread it once.

  3. Aw, amazing review Lauren :D I don't think this is a book for me, not yet, but I do think it sounds cute. <3 And so happy you loved it. Yay for it being funny :D I love reading all your reviews. You are amazing. <3 thank you for sharing about it :)

  4. AH, I am so excited for this one, Lauren, and absolutely THRILLED you loved it! I can't wait to read it myself and the reasons you outlined in your review all speak to me immensely. I love Palmer's friendships and her journeys of growth are always such relate-able experiences. Plus, the swoon factor is one I can always get behind, despite the minimalist quality it retains in comparison to the rest of the novel. Lovely review, dear--you've made me even more excited to read this than I was before and I didn't even think that was possible! ;)

  5. I have yet to read a Liza Palmer book. I've got Nowhere But Home languishing on my Kindle, so I certainly intend to read it! However, Girl Before a Mirror sounds absolutely fabulous. It sounds fun, smart and compelling - and I already like the main character just based on how you've described her. Can't wait to read it!

  6. Sold! I'm going to go pre-order this right now. I adore these kinds of stories :-)

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

  7. Yay for female friendships!! I love books where that's the focus -- romance is awesome but sometimes I want there to be more focus on the friendship side of things. I want to read this book. Now. So...thanks for that.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...