Review: A Window Opens by Elisabeth Egan
A Window Opens is a realistic story of a woman struggling to find that precious work/life balance.
Alice is a woman in her thirties, living a happy, successful life. She has a happy marriage, three great kids, a nice house in the suburbs and a lovely part time job as a books editor at a women's magazine. Then life throws an unexpected curve ball, one that changes the family situation. Suddenly, Alice needs to find a full time job, while her lawyer husband, Nicholas, sets up his own law firm. Luckily for Alice she soon finds employment with a hip, start-up company, whose goal is to be the future of bookselling. Suddenly, Alice finds herself not only adjusting to the modern corporate world, but the fact that she has to juggle work with her family life--supporting her husband, looking after her three children, and also supporting her father who has a serious illness.
Being a little younger than Alice, and in a different life stage (I'm something of a late bloomer, and an Independent Miss,) I found the set up and initial chapters very difficult to relate to. However, once the story got rolling, I found it quite readable, and felt myself developing a greater level of empathy for women who juggle their work lives with their roles as wives and mothers and who may be struggling to find that precious work/life balance. I also found the depictions of Scroll (the company Alice works for,) and the fickle way that it operates to be quite amusing and somewhat true of the corporate world. Themes of terminal illness and alcohol addiction are handled quite well.
Parts of this novel are funny, parts are sad and most of it, I suspect, will be easy for many women to relate to.
Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia for my reading copy.