Everyone is Beautiful – Katherine Center

Title: Everyone Is Beautiful
Author: Katherine Center
ISBN: 9781400066438
Pages: 256
Release Date: February 17, 2009
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Genre: Mom Lit
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

From the publisher’s website:

Lanie Coates’s life is spinning out of control. She’s piled everything she owns into a U-Haul and driven with her husband, Peter, and their three little boys from their cozy Texas home to a multiflight walkup in the Northeast. She’s left behind family, friends, and a comfortable life–all so her husband can realize his dream of becoming a professional musician. But somewhere in the eye of her personal hurricane, it hits Lanie that she once had dreams too.

These days, Lanie always seems to rank herself dead last–and when another mom accidentally criticizes her appearance, it’s the final straw. Fifteen years, three babies, and more pounds than she’s willing to count since the day she said “I do,” Lanie longs desperately to feel like her old self again. Lanie sets change in motion–joining a gym, signing up for photography classes, and finding a new best friend. But she also creates waves that come to threaten her whole life. In the end, Lanie must figure out once and for all how to find herself without losing everything else in the process.

I really enjoyed Katherine Center’s first novel The Bright Side of Disaster, so when I got the chance to review her new novel from Pump Up Your Book Promotion Blog Tours, I jumped at the chance. I’m thrilled to say that Everyone Is Beautiful is just as good as, if not better than, The Bright Side of Disaster.

I love how honest Center’s writing is. She doesn’t try to hide anything; instead of telling us that Lanie is depressed and completely strung out, she shows us. She shows us how much Lanie gives to her family, and how there is little (if anything) left for herself. She shows us how much Lanie really needs something of her own, something to brighten her day and give her a chance to breathe. I have to say, reading the novel, I felt just as trapped as Lanie did. When Lanie finally does start doing something that is only for herself, I cheered for her. Center manages to get the reader fully invested in her characters. It’s an amazing talent, and one that the author uses very effectively.

I thought the central message of this book was incredible. No one is perfect, and everyone is beautiful. How many times have we really thought of ourselves as beautiful? Not many, I’m guessing. It’s always “my eyes look puffy” or “is that a new wrinkle?” or “ugh, bad hair day!” I love the idea that everyone is beautiful. It puts a positive spin on life!

I loved all the secondary characters in Everyone Is Beautiful as well. The only thing I wish for the novel is that there could have been more development of these wonderful personalities! Of course, I understand that it was Lanie’s story, but it’s just a testament to Katherine Center’s character writing ability that I just wanted more!

As you can tell, I really adored Everyone Is Beautiful. This is a book with great characters, constant humor, an interesting storyline, and a wonderful message. I enjoyed it immensely, and I highly recommend it!

A big thank you to Dorothy at Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Blog Tours for sending me this book to review!

Comments

  1. Great review! I too loved this book–I’ve been telling everyon e about it.

  2. Great review! I too loved this book–I’ve been telling everyon e about it.

  3. I have this book on my TBR pile as well.. and your review has made me bump it up higher on my list..:) Shall read it soon! Glad you enjoyed this one. And I love the positive message that this book has to offer as well! Your post made me smile coz just as I was leaving to work, I looked at the mirror and realized that my eyes did look very puffy thanks to the meager 2 to 3 hours I had last night..:)

  4. I have this book on my TBR pile as well.. and your review has made me bump it up higher on my list..:) Shall read it soon! Glad you enjoyed this one. And I love the positive message that this book has to offer as well! Your post made me smile coz just as I was leaving to work, I looked at the mirror and realized that my eyes did look very puffy thanks to the meager 2 to 3 hours I had last night..:)

  5. Great review. It’s going on my list!

  6. Great review. It’s going on my list!

  7. Interesting name for the genre: Mom lit.

  8. Interesting name for the genre: Mom lit.

  9. It’s true, we always note our faults firsts. Women, in general, tend to always put themselves last too. As I was reading your review, it reminded me of Terri Hatcher’s book Burnt Toast. Hatcher’s book is a memoir of sorts but it talks about always taking the burnt piece of toast and not putting ourselves first. It was a surprisingly enjoyable read.

  10. It’s true, we always note our faults firsts. Women, in general, tend to always put themselves last too. As I was reading your review, it reminded me of Terri Hatcher’s book Burnt Toast. Hatcher’s book is a memoir of sorts but it talks about always taking the burnt piece of toast and not putting ourselves first. It was a surprisingly enjoyable read.

  11. Great review Swapna. I really loved this book as well. More people should pay attention to the beauty of people on the inside instead of always judging by the outside.

  12. Great review Swapna. I really loved this book as well. More people should pay attention to the beauty of people on the inside instead of always judging by the outside.

  13. I got this one from LT and can’t wait to start it, especially after reading your review! I have it sitting in front of me for inspiration to finish some other ones first! 😉

  14. I got this one from LT and can’t wait to start it, especially after reading your review! I have it sitting in front of me for inspiration to finish some other ones first! 😉

  15. I’m really looking forward to reading this one because of it’s upbeat message.

  16. I’m really looking forward to reading this one because of it’s upbeat message.

  17. I’m actually reading this one now — and I fell asleep last night before I could finish! I only have 20 pages to go… argh! 🙂 Can’t wait to conclude the story. I really loved it, too, and can’t wait to review it — I was shocked by how much I related to Lanie, though I’m neither married or a mother. But everything Center writes about rings true for women of all ages, I think!

  18. I’m actually reading this one now — and I fell asleep last night before I could finish! I only have 20 pages to go… argh! 🙂 Can’t wait to conclude the story. I really loved it, too, and can’t wait to review it — I was shocked by how much I related to Lanie, though I’m neither married or a mother. But everything Center writes about rings true for women of all ages, I think!

  19. I don’t know that this is my sort of book, but it sounds superbly done, I may have to recommend it to a few people.

  20. I don’t know that this is my sort of book, but it sounds superbly done, I may have to recommend it to a few people.

  21. Loved this book and love Katherine!! Jen – I didn’t think either of her two books would be my sort of book (I DON’T do mommy lit!) but she writes so well that you just can’t help it. You’d be surprised. Wait until after you have the baby. You’ll like it!

  22. Loved this book and love Katherine!! Jen – I didn’t think either of her two books would be my sort of book (I DON’T do mommy lit!) but she writes so well that you just can’t help it. You’d be surprised. Wait until after you have the baby. You’ll like it!

  23. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this one as well…very entertaining and engaging!

  24. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this one as well…very entertaining and engaging!

  25. Great review! Will have to check out this book!

  26. Great review! Will have to check out this book!

  27. I had seen this one in library but had no idea what it was about, except for what was written on the cover. You review is great! I added it to my TBR list 😉

  28. I had seen this one in library but had no idea what it was about, except for what was written on the cover. You review is great! I added it to my TBR list 😉

  29. It’s so great to read all these wonderful comments. The message of the book IS very positive–it’s about looking for beauty and things to love in life instead of looking for flaws and things to criticize. I’m so glad it spoke to you! Have you seen the book trailer?? A friend and I put it together, and it we are so proud of it:

    Many thanks for your lovely review and for all your kind words!

  30. It’s so great to read all these wonderful comments. The message of the book IS very positive–it’s about looking for beauty and things to love in life instead of looking for flaws and things to criticize. I’m so glad it spoke to you! Have you seen the book trailer?? A friend and I put it together, and it we are so proud of it:

    Many thanks for your lovely review and for all your kind words!

  31. Great Review! Definitely going to add it to my TBR list. I love the positive energy the book sends out!

  32. Great Review! Definitely going to add it to my TBR list. I love the positive energy the book sends out!

  33. Thanks for the great review. I’ll keep an eye out for this one…and I love the cover, too!

  34. Thanks for the great review. I’ll keep an eye out for this one…and I love the cover, too!

  35. I’ve seen this book on several blogs for the tour and it looks like a great number of people like this one.

  36. I’ve seen this book on several blogs for the tour and it looks like a great number of people like this one.

  37. Great review. I finished reading it tonight and really liked it. I hope it’s ok if I link to your review. I’ll mention your giveaway : )

  38. Great review. I finished reading it tonight and really liked it. I hope it’s ok if I link to your review. I’ll mention your giveaway : )

  39. I loved this book, and I’m glad you enjoyed it, too. I especially liked that all women — not just mothers — could relate to Lanie. Thanks for the review.

    –Anna
    Diary of an Eccentric

  40. I loved this book, and I’m glad you enjoyed it, too. I especially liked that all women — not just mothers — could relate to Lanie. Thanks for the review.

    –Anna
    Diary of an Eccentric

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