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I found the premise of the book quite appealing, not so much the execution. First of all it at times felt kind of jarring and disjointed. The women receive their letters to come live with their lifelong friend in Fiji, to essentially give up their current lives and spend their remaining years in "paradise". All the women are in their sixties, and this is an extraordinary chance for them to come together and reinvent their remaining years among life long friends.
The next chapter is essentially about six weeks after they arrive on the island. Hmmm. Seems like their initial reactions and adapting to this new place and life would have been interesting, but all that is skipped.
The narration is also rather jarring. Some of the characters, especially the housekeeper, are voiced beautifully. But most of the male characters sound alike, and all sound like clueless idiots, and the main female characters...they sound different, but are hard to keep straight who is who. But the worse part is the fights. Often out of the blue one woman will react to something said with extreme anger...and the narrator gets very loud and intense and it almost feels threatening to listen to, and you may find other people around you suddenly startled if they walk by the room you're in and hear what you're hearing.
At the same time there are excellent passages, some of the Fijian phrases used are beautiful, and some of the reflections on life are insightful. One of the highlights of the book is a character that has slowly progressing dementia. When the author writes how that character is experiencing her world it is both heartbreaking and brilliant. And it may give you some insight if someone you know is suffering from Alzheimer's.
So overall not a favorite book of mine, but has its moments.
Great story about how life's many choices lead down paths of freedom or paths of security but rarely both at once.