Balancing Acts by Zoe Fishman (Harper, March 16, 2010), 384 pages
Charlie left a high-paying position on Wall Street to open her Brooklyn yoga studio. She attends her 10-year college reunion hoping to drum up business, but while she’s there she reconnects with three former classmates, who, like her, haven’t ended up quite where they planned.
• Sabine edits romance novels but hasn’t gotten around to writing her own book yet.
• Naomi hasn’t picked up her camera in years and is now a single mom doing web design.
• Bess has always dreamed of doing real journalism but instead writes cutlines (photo captions) for a gossip rag.
Balancing Acts struck me as kind of a cross between Sex in the City and Jennie Nash’s The Only True Genius in the Family.
I really enjoyed this book. I particularly loved how Fishman used yoga to not only facilitate the story and its progression — the four former classmates agree to meet for a six-session closed beginner’s class — but also to really inform and illustrate the whole of each character’s life.
Overall, the characters are believable and likable. I loved the focus on creativity and the arts in each of their lives.
This is a small thing, but: I’m really surprised by how technologically illiterate the main characters are. I’m the same age they are (although I don’t live in New York City and I’m not in the same life stage), and I’m much more in tune with technology than basically any of these women are.
Familiarity with yoga isn’t a factor in liking this book; although I’m somewhat interested in yoga, I’ve never done any yoga (unless you count Wii Fit).
If this is women’s fiction (Oh, all these labels!), it’s the first book I’ve heard called that I’ve actually enjoyed. This was a quick read, and I’m very glad I read it.
About the author
Zoe Fishman lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband. Balancing Acts is her first novel.
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I received this book from the publisher, as part of the TLC book tour.