Today, I’m sharing my thoughts about Wrong Side of Forty by Jana DeLeon. It’s the first book in a new series, Marina at Midlife and is from an exciting new reading genre. Paranormal Women’s Fiction or PWF for short.
What is Paranormal Women’s Fiction?
Well, 13 amazing paranormal romance, urban fantasy and paranormal cozy mystery authors have teamed up to write books where the protagonist is a woman in her 40s or older. As a menopausal woman within spitting distance of the big 5-0, I’m overjoyed at this new genre and can’t wait to buy them all! (You can check out the ones I’ve read by following the tag PWF.)
Last year, I decided that shorter reviews were the way forward me and my blog. 😉 Consequently, I only write full detailed reviews for the books I receive from authors, publishers and PR organiser (ARCs).
Now, on with my mini review…
Wrong Side of Forty (Marian at Midlife #1) by Jana DeLeon
For many, midlife is the beginning.
It was a day like any other day for Marina Trahan…until she caught her husband in bed with another woman. Before that eye-opening wake-up call, Marina would have described her life as average or uneventful, maybe even boring. But now, chaos and confusion reign supreme. She’d expected to slide through midlife with her unwanted extra pounds, chin hair, and hot flashes and move somewhat gracefully into elastic waist pants and having no verbal filter. But with a wayward husband, a high-maintenance daughter, a lackluster career, and a crazy mother all weighing her down, Marina is ready to wave the white flag of surrender.
Then an intriguing stranger named Alexios shows up out of nowhere and insists she is descended from a goddess and is the only person who can save the world from certain destruction. She has roughly a week to do it. Solving a centuries-old mystery seems like a more interesting proposition than the other situations Marina is facing, so she accepts his challenge. But her search for a magical item of power reveals far more about Marina than she ever knew. Maybe enough to save the world. And even herself.
A Good Story To Start This New Series
Jana DeLeon is a new-to-me author but as a woman in my late forties I liked the premise of this story.
I really liked the characters Jana created. Our protagonist, Marina exhibited all the personality traits that I love. She’s intelligent, resilient, self-reliant and has oodles of gumption. The supporting cast are a diverse group, showcasing lots of different characteristics. I loved reading about Marina’s midlife coming-of-age challenges and seeing her blossom in confidence.
Unfortunately, what didn’t sit as well was the paranormal aspect of the story. Which is completely unexpected as paranormal romance and urban fantasy are my favourite genres. However in this book it didn’t feel as well-written as the marriage break-up aspect. The time line, plot development, character interactions, magical mythos and final resolution felt jarring. Without the paranormal in this book, my rating would have been higher than the 3 stars I gave it on.
This is a good read and I did enjoy it. Plus no life-or-death perilous cliffhanger ending! WoopWoop! So, I’ll probably read book 2 at some point to find out how Marina copes as a divorcee.
Buy WRONG SIDE OF FORTY (or the rest of the Marina at Midlife series) in print, audio and ebook formats through the usual sources, including:
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Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to read my thoughts, I really appreciate it. I hope I’ve sparked enough interest that you’ll check it out for yourself. 😉
Bye for now,