Kirkus ReviewsA man's infidelity rocks the lives of many New York women five months after his death, as former lovers discover that he was infected with more than just an electric personality. Jenkins' sequel to Don't You Forget About Me explores a new set of women linked to financial giant Jack Smith. Pam Smith, grieving her husband's death, suffers the haunting news that she is infected with AIDS. She searches for a way to cope with the pain Jack caused as she comforts the other women Jack infected during their estranged marriage. A cast of sympathetic characters filters in and out of the Smith household, illustrating the complexity of a marriage that seemed tranquil on the surface but was furious and unpredictable underneath. More than six women, including Pam's sister, Marie, and Jack's co-worker Sandra, had affairs with Jack. Pam, meanwhile, cannot help but wonder why she is extending herself to those who deceived her, taking on the responsibility Jack should have endured had he lived to see his own path of destruction. Jenkins blends Pam's omniscient narration with monologues from each of the secondary characters, providing resolution and a range of perspectives on Jack, Pam and life with AIDS. While each character brings his or her own drama and complexity, they unite in a blend of love and hate for the toxic yet irresistible Jack. Jenkins shows the reader all sides of Jack, even the tender and vulnerable: Maryanne, one of Jack's girlfriends, has a daughter with birth defects, with whom Jack had a close relationship and for whom he established a large trust fund. A gritty, realistic portrait of the aftermath of deceit.
PARTICULARS OF THE BOOK :
Published by: CreateSpace
Pages: 317 paperback
Author website: Suzanne Jenkins
Find her book on: Amazon
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The Dame's Review :
Well, Suzanne's done it again with more of the saga of Babylon and Jack's very prolific love life...which was heretofore unbeknownst to his devoted wife Pam. I read this book in the same wonder I read her previous novel "Pam of Babylon" which I reviewed a couple of months ago.
This one is the third book in the series, and it has only gotten more detailed and better as it's gone along!
The only thing I still can't realistically grasp is how Jack got away with having so many lovers and how poor Pam could be so willing to continue to accept them into her home for their explanations and "pouring out of their hearts." I was widowed and the only thing I would do if it happened to me would be to be very curious about the whole thing. Otherwise, I'd never have the openness and willingness to be a "mother nature" that Pam seems to be in all of Suzanne's books. This is something I've found hard to swallow in her novels. Really makes me cringe at some of the lovers.
Otherwise, I enjoyed the writing and reading about Jack's exploits and how he managed to budget time with his many affairs of the heart and lust. Just amazing juggling acts! I personally found him a reprehensible character. But, I loved the characters of Pam and Maryanne. Particularly Maryanne who was a champion from the start in her innocence and willingness to do the right thing once she found out about the philandering Jack.
For those of us who love to follow a book that's juicy without being too sexually explicit, this is the one for you. Suzanne Jenkins writes a very interesting and entertaining book. Although I'm not a fan of Jack's, I think it's interesting that I care enough to dislike him. Which only means that he's real to me! That's how well she writes.
4 stars Deborah/TheBookishDame
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