This week the 93rd and 94th reviews of my book came in on Amazon, and the combination made me wildly happy.
Jaclyn Geller is the first reader to articulate the hidden-in-plain-sight, why-don’t-we-know-these-things theme that connects my two serious books. She wrote, “In Cutting Loose: Why Women Who End Their Marriages Do So Well, Ashton Applewhite said what many knew but wouldn’t admit: divorce is not the shattering tragedy it’s often made out to be. In fact, many women exit marriages and begin to blossom. For those of us who’ve watched friends leave matrimony behind, start looking and feeling better, and begin to take off professionally, Applewhite’s book was a reality check. One had to wonder, why did it take so long for someone to say this in simple, straightforward terms? This Chair Rocks accomplishes a similar feat of stating the obvious/not-so-obvious in clear, witty prose. Remember being a teenager, hearing that these were the best years of your life, and wincing in horror? Applewhite shows the benefits of getting older: wisdom, sensuality, the pleasure of time-tested, meaningful relationships… Her account is personal but not overly-confessional. Real-life lessons and unique insights emerge from the people she interviews. She debunks myth after myth about getting older, putting everything into a meaningful political context. Buy this book, and buy a copy for someone you love who’s just turned 70!”
Jane Bertrand is working on a book about climbing the highest peak in all 50 states. (Someone’s gotta do it!) She wrote, “I read your book This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism during the fifth annual cross country ski trip in northern Maine with my best friend from kindergarten, her older sister, and a college roommate (ranging in age from 67-69). As we relaxed around the fire each evening, I would regale my friends with key passages from your book, which resonated deeply with this group. Prior to this trip, we had asked ourselves: how many more years can we keep making this three-day trip? After reading the book, we simply vowed “As long as we can.” Bertrand went on to appreciate my “captivating writing style” and “strategies for defying stereotypes,” but that’s not the part that brought a giant smile to my face. How long will I keep being an activist? As long as I can.
When I hit 100 reviews, I’m having a party.