**** Happiness Sold Separately By Lolly Winston
A tender, realistic tale of complicated love.
When Silicon Valley attorney Elinor Mackey, 40, learns that her husband, Ted, is having an affair, she feels "pity ... and fatigue" rather than anger. Their marriage has drifted over years of fertility tests and treatments, and though they still love each other, they're no longer sure that that's enough to keep them together. Winston draws compassionate portraits of both Elinor and Ted, as well as Ted's love interest, Gina, a nutritionist and no trashy home wrecker; her affection for Ted is clear and she desperately hopes he'll become a father figure to her 10-year-old son. As both marriage and affair wax and wane, the three protagonists tackle the big questions of love and life.
Warner Books. 296 pages. $21.99. ISBN: 0446533068
Boston Globe ****
"[Happiness Sold Separately is a] tender, wry, beautifully crafted story about a marriage in trouble.... Winston narrates the novel from several points of view, and in the process makes all her characters sympathetic." DIANE WHITE
Chicago Sun-Times ****
"Lolly Winston's new novel, Happiness Sold Separately, is one of those lovely reads you enjoy for yourself, just for the story, then read again with your book club to criticize and defend the characters and their actions.... It's messy, like love, and life." LESLIE BALDACCI
San Jose Mercury News ****
"Winston's poise is betrayed at times by redundancies in the book, which belie a lack of confidence in the reader.... But these are small ripples in an otherwise capable, smart and poignant story, illuminating the internal struggle to do the right things in life at the right times." CHRISTINE THOMAS
Washington Post ****
"[Winston's] plain-spoken prose and a not-too-gritty resolution should make this a book-group favorite.... Her...