‘So,’ Carly was saying as I sat down, ‘what’s everyone’s mantra for the year?’
She’d asked the same question for the past three years and I couldn’t for the life of me remember what I’d said twelve months ago. I poured the wine instead of answering.
Jesse groaned. ‘I’m not playing this game.’
‘Why not?’ Carly snapped. ‘What else are you doing?’
In spite of being newly separated, Stella is happy. She and Terry, her ex-husband, have stayed on good terms, and there’s the possibility of a new relationship with a handsome man she’s met. But at her annual New Year’s catch up with her friends Carly and Jesse, Stella wonders if the pair are as happy as she is. Carly thinks her husband might be having an unfair, and doesn’t know how to fix it. Jese’s husband, Steve, is a control freak who never has a kind word for his beautiful wife. Then her night out with the girls takes a curious twist. Jesse heads home, but Stella and Carly had off for more fun – little expecting to run into someone they shouldn’t in a very compromising situation. Will what they learn destroy their friendships?
Stella Makes Good is a sometimes funny, sometimes gripping and ultimately moving exploration of relationships and friendship. Told chiefly from the first person perspective of Stella, along with chapters devoted to the third person perspectives of both Carly and Jesse, so that the reader is privy to the motivations and insecurities of each of the characters, in an intimate and absorbing way.
This is Heidke’s fourth novel and once again, she cleverly blends romance, friendship and personal growth into a satisfying whole.
Stella Makes Good, by Lisa Heidke
Allen & Unwin, 2012
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