She Makes It Look Easy  -     By: Marybeth Whalen
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She Makes It Look Easy

David C. Cook / 2011 / Paperback

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Product Description

When Ariel Baxter meets her new neighbor, Justine Miller, she thinks, "I want what she has." Justine's world of clutter-free counters, fresh-baked bread, homemade crafts, neighborhood play dates, and organization techniques sparks her admiration. But when she hears rumors about Justine's real home life, she wonders . . . is Justine's "perfection" too good to be true?

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 384
Vendor: David C. Cook
Publication Date: 2011
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0781403707
ISBN-13: 9780781403702
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Ariel Baxter has just moved into the neighborhood of her dreams. The chaos of domestic life and the loneliness of motherhood, however, moved with her. Then she meets her neighbor, Justine Miller. Justine ushers Ariel into a world of clutter-free houses, fresh-baked bread, homemade crafts, neighborhood playdates, and organization techniques designed to make marriage better and parenting manageable.
 
Soon Ariel realizes there is hope for peace, friendship, and clean kitchen counters. But when rumors start to circulate about Justine’s real home life, Ariel must choose whether to believe the best about the friend she admires or consider the possibility that "perfection" isn’t always what it seems to be.
 
A novel for every woman who has looked at another woman’s life and said, "I want what she has," She Makes It Look Easy reminds us of the danger of pedestals and the beauty of authentic friendship.

Author Bio

Marybeth Whalen (www.marybethwhalen.com) is the author of the novel The Mailbox, a member of the Proverbs 31 Ministries writing team, and a nationwide speaker to women’s groups. She lives with her husband and their six children outside Charlotte, North Carolina.
 

ChristianBookPreviews.com

She Makes It Look Easy by Marybeth Whalen strikingly portrays the dangers of misplaced trust and the freedom that comes with true friendship. Ariel Baxter believes everything will be perfect when she moves into her dream neighborhood, but even with her new organizational notebook things are less than ideal. Ariel's neighbor, Justine Miller, flaunts her perfectly organized life; yet, in reality her whole world is falling apart. Ariel discovers how to respond in difficult situations as she wrestles with a world where façade is taken as fact.

Whalen shows her readers two completely different women through dual-perspective writing. One chapter probes into Justine's secretive thoughts whereas the next explores Ariel's confused loyalties. Justine's dark side is a direct foil to Ariel's trusting disposition. It is a dynamic relationship that clearly illustrates the folly of absolute trust in another human. This is most evident when Ariel, prompted by the promise of Justine's friendship, ignores her instinct to tell her husband about her wild night out. The emotional distress in this scene compels readers to evaluate their own priorities.

The frantic mother of three boys, Ariel longs for the peace and organization of her new neighbor, Justine. However, when troubling news of Justine's marital unfaithfulness reaches an innocent Ariel, she must decide whether blindly to support her neighbor against the rumors or to pursue an ugly truth. Faced with undeniable proof, Ariel finally faces the lies of perfection she has believed and ultimately opens her heart to the only perfect friend.

The believability of Ariel's character shines through her flaws. Because she is a messy mom who does not have it all together, readers can sympathize with her struggles and successes. The ups and downs in her spiritual life also give a sense of reality to her personality that seems to lift her off the page. Her interactions with other characters are meaningful and serve to further the plot through authentic dialogue.

Whalen does an excellent job of speaking to the insecurities and struggles of women in She Makes It Look Easy. Through Ariel's difficulties readers realize that only God is worthy of absolute trust and that true friendship requires honesty. This simply written but gripping novel would be a good addition to any Christian woman’s personal library. – Anna Soden, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com

Product Reviews

4.7 Stars Out Of 5
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Quality:
4.8 out Of 5
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4.6 out Of 5
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  1. tanderson
    Texas
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Excellent Read!
    December 12, 2012
    tanderson
    Texas
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This review was written for She Makes It Look Easy - eBook.
    This book was an unexpected WOW! I thought it was going to be "lite chick lit"-- but it went much deeper! For every woman who compares herself to the others around her and finds herself SO inadequate--this message is for you! Each of us should appreciate who God has made us to be and where he has planted us instead of trying to be "perfect" like our neighbor seems to be. Great Read!
  2. Kay Monroe
    Telford, PA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Very good book, read to the end.
    December 10, 2012
    Kay Monroe
    Telford, PA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I started out thinking this was going to be a very shallow book. What a wrong impression!

    It would be a good gift for someone that may be headed for trouble, with fantasy romantic thinking. Seems shallow at first, almost quit reading it, but really tells a great story for today's easy divorce thinking!

    Well written!
  3. sugar
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    November 4, 2011
    sugar
    Quality: 4
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 4
    GOOD BOOK MAKES YOU THINK THE GRASS IS NOT ALWAYS GREENER ON THE OTHER SIDE.
  4. Nebraska Family Times
    Genoa, NE
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Not the typical Christian novel!
    October 3, 2011
    Nebraska Family Times
    Genoa, NE
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Review by Shelly Burke, Editor and Publisher

    She Makes it Look Easy is not a typical "everything-works-out-perfectly-in-the-end" Christian novel. The book delves into the lives of three families and the impacts of the choices husbands and wives make. You might find yourself shocked to find that some of the outwardly "perfect" Christian characters make very bad choices_and you might find yourself closely identifying with several of the characters as well.

    I was immediately drawn into the lives of the characters in She Makes it Look Easy. The story is told from the alternating views of the central characters, Justine and Ariel. Justine Miller makes it all look "easy" with her perfectly clean home, perfectly groomed children, and perfectly organized life. Under the "perfect," however, are dark motives and desires.

    Ariel Baxter's family is "moving on up" when they move into Essex Falls, an upscale neighborhood. Justine quickly introduces herself to her new neighbor Ariel and offers to help Ariel organize her life. Soon, however, Ariel suspects that Justine has motives beyond helping a new friend. When she delves deeper into Justine's actions she discovers a secret that Justine has been keeping.

    Justine and Ariel both face difficult choices, and you'll be wondering until the final chapter if they'll do the right thing.

    She Makes it Look Easy reminded me of several things; first of all, when I find myself too eager to please someone who makes me feel bad about myself, that person is not a friend. Second, I was reminded not to judge people who seem to "have it all together;" they might be hiding a secret, or they might need a friend. And third, no matter how much I want to be a friend, there are times that doing the right thing is more important than a not-so-true friendship.

    Even if you usually don't enjoy fiction, I encourage you to read She Makes it Look Easy.
  5. AlyciaMorales
    New Mexico
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    SMILE by Marybeth Whalen
    September 16, 2011
    AlyciaMorales
    New Mexico
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 4
    Ariel Baxter has always dreamed of living in Essex Falls. The suburbian life woos her into thinking she can have the perfect life. The perfect house. The white picket fence. The adoring husband. The well-behaved children. The perfect friends. An organized life is what she desires.

    And Justine appears to have it all. But does she?

    And will Ariel fall into Justine's trap? Or will she find the courage to stand for what is truly right in life?

    Marybeth Whalen has written another incredible novel. I consider it to be a well-written, suspenseful-suburban-women-life read. It touches on a topic that would make most Christian women cringe but is extremely relevant in the lives of many women around us. I applaud her for the honesty of her characters and the fact that she never once sugar-coats or underplays the issue at hand. This book is a bold statement many women should not ignore.
Displaying items 1-5 of 11
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