Opening at a writer's convention, Kendall is hoping to win a coveted Zelda award. Instead, her publishing company drops her and even her three long standing writer friends can't keep her from fleeing to her home where another bombshell drops on her. Her husband has been gone all weekend and Kendall must face the fact that he has been cheating on her and wants a divorce. In short, her life is falling apart around her ears. Fleeing for a second time, she high tails it to the cabin in the North Carolina mountains that she has always loved. It is here that Mallory, Faye, and Tanya ultimately find her, hiding from the world, completely emotionally paralyzed, and unable to write. Her three friends decide to help her write the final book of her contract so she can get on with her life. But when they do this, they expose the long buried secrets they've kept from the world and from each other. Even worse, this book that was supposed to be ignored, a chore to be gotten through before Kendall can move on to other things, becomes a bestseller and opens all four of the writers and friends to the scrutiny not only of the world but to each other and to their loved ones.
An interesting premise, this does share a bit of the seamy side of publishing and exposes a fickle and subjective profession. It also gives a few insights into some of the ways in which writers write and how they feel about their chosen profession. Mostly though it is intended to be a book about friendship and secrets. The characters are quite different from each other and their secrets are mostly fitting given their personal lives. But the bond of friendship between the women needed a bit more development to be completely believable. It can be hard to balance an ensemble cast in a novel, making certain that each character receives enough time on the page and enough development to feel authentic but Wax does manage that balance here, telling each main character's story by turns, allowing the reader to understand each home life and a bit of why the secrets are so important, even potentially devastating. The secondary characters, the children and men in the womens' lives, were quite flat and undeveloped but necessary to the plot. But this was a minor weakness. While the women could be frustrating and some of the secrets were a bit much, this was mostly a likeable piece of chick lit.