Holly Banks Full of Angst by Julie Valerie

Holly Banks Full of Angst by Julie Valerie
Publisher: Lake Union
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense, Women’s Fiction
Length: Full Length (378 pgs)
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Holly Banks could not have made a worse first impression on the seemingly perfect moms in her new affluent community, the Village of Primm. Turns out wearing pink piggy pajama bottoms while dropping off her kindergartener late to the first day of school wasn’t her best look.

Not to mention Holly’s worried her husband may be having an affair, she can’t get her daughter to stop sucking her thumb, her hard-won film degree is collecting dust, and to top it all off, the power-hungry PTA president clearly has it in for her…
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To make matters even worse, Holly’s natural eye for drama lands her smack-dab in the middle of a neighborhood mystery—right as her own crazy mother shows up in Primm “to help.” Through it all, Holly begins to realize her neighbors may be just as flawed as—and even wackier than—she is, leaving her to wonder: Is there such a thing as a perfect mom?

They might all be a little wacky.

This is the first novel by Julie Valerie, but it reads as if she’s been writing for a while. The novel flows well and the characters are intriguing. I read this book in one afternoon. I had to put it down, but I didn’t want to. I enjoyed the time reading it and would pick up others by this author.

The thing about this story? Holly Banks thinks she’s in the middle of a perfect world and has to be perfect, too. Except she’s not. Has she come to accept that? No. That’s what makes her relatable. We’re all trying to be better versions of ourselves and hoping we can strive a little harder. Who wants to coast through life?

The funny part is, while some of the things that happen in this book are a little outlandish, it’s like reading about friends with the life-is-stranger-than-fiction bend to it. Really.

If you want a breezy novel that’s good for reading in an afternoon, then this might be the book for you.

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