Saturday, November 7, 2009

Three Weddings and a Bar Mitzvah by Melody Carlson

I never thought I'd say this, but I think I'm going to miss the girls of 86 Bloomberg Place! With her last novel in this YA chick lit series, Melody Carlson has wrapped things up rather neatly... some instances, a bit too meatly.

Weddings are blooming for two of the residents of 86 Bloomberg Place. If you've kept up with the series, you know who the brides-to-be are. If not...I'm not telling! Babies are blooming as well...and again, you won't hear it from me.

"Three Weddings and a Barmitzvah" finds Kendall, Megan, Leilani and Anna in a hectic whirlwind of showers, proposals, romantic turmoil, and a few goodbyes. Oh, and a bar mitzvah!

Questions still abound: will Kendall's family see the changes in her, or will they continue to lack respect for her and treat her like the family black sheep? And will Nana's decision seal her fate as the sister to hate?

Leilani isn't on her mother's top ten people to love list: can forgiveness ever play a part in their relationship, or will things always remain strained between them? And will her father ever step up to the plate?

Megan has a career choice to make, as well as a decision in her love-life. Can she trust her instincts to make the right choices, and is her faith strong enough to weather the tests to come?

Anna holds people at arm's length: will it cost her the affection of the one man she finds herself able to love? And what will this mean for her job at the publishing house? Can Anna ever stand up to her overbearing Latina mother...or is that at the root of her problem?

Toss in a few boyfriends/fiances, moving, interfering parents, distant parents, financial issues and job pressures, and you've got a pretty clear picture of 86 Bloomberg Place!

As I said earlier, I think some of these knots were tied a bit too neatly. Closure doesn't always happen in real life, and in some cases I think leaving an open door to possibilities would have felt more realistic.

But Kendall's maturity drew me closer to her in this book, and even though she drove me nuts, Anna's mom finally grew on me as well. This isn't my favorite series by Melody Carlson, but I did come to like it a bit in the end.

I'm giving "Three Weddings and a Barmitzvah" four out of five bookmarks, and the series as a whole three out of five, with two bridal bouquets as charms. To read reviews of the other novels in the series, click the links below. My thanks to Audra Jennings for my review copy!

I Heart Bloomberg (Book #1)
Let Them Eat Fruitcake (Book #2)
Spring Broke (Book #3)
Three Weddings and a Barmitzvah (Book #4)

Happy Reading!



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