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Today I’m reviewing Hot Flashes and Cold Lemonade, by Susan Flett Swiderski .






RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ / ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥




Living the perfect life has always been easy peasy for Pearl Bryzinski, because she’s practically a pro at ignoring the negative and putting a positive spin on the facts, but it’s impossible for her to find anything positive about Daddy skipping town with that blue-haired floozy in a flashy brown Pinto. No matter how hard she tries, she can’t ignore the fact that he’s gone… or the fact that she’s becoming a drama queen who can sweat like a sumo wrestler doing push-ups in a sauna. It’s almost enough to suck the blush out of her rose-colored glasses. Whether she likes it or not, she’s gonna have to turn some of her wishbone into backbone.

Layer by layer, assumptions and misconceptions peel away, as Pearl learns to buck up in the face of reality, and to laugh at her imperfect… but not so bad… life. Supported by a down-to-earth husband who loves her with every blue-collar bone in his body, a mother who isn’t the self-centered witch Pearl imagined her to be, three terrific grown kids… okay, make that two terrific kids, and a Golden Boy who’s a far cry from 24-carat… and a bunch of wonderful wacky gal pals, Pearl comes to realize that her mixed bag of family and friends makes her life damned near perfect. Pearl being Pearl, she’ll never give up her rosy specs entirely, but learning to handle reality also means learning to deal with death.


The blurb gives the reader a good general idea of what the book is about. Pearl Bryzinski has spent most of her life living with rose-colored glasses on. If a positive spin can be put on anything, Pearl is the one to do it – even when she sees her dad leave her mom with another woman. Her mom Ida, doesn’t shed a tear; just sells their house and moves to an apartment in an unsavory part of town.

Pearl’s been married to her husband George forever, and has three great kids, Matt, MaryBeth, and her golden boy, Luke. After weeks of not feeling right, she finally decides to see a doctor, and finds that she’s in the midst of her ‘change of life’ – menopause. Lucky for her she has a few great friends to count on, especially her best friend Candy to help her through.

From the situation with dad to her golden boy Luke and everything in between, Pearl realizes everything is not what it seems when she takes off the colored glasses. It’s a story about how a woman in mid-life comes out of her shell and deals with the realities of life, love, and loss.

Hot Flashes and Cold Lemonade is a great read that I could relate to. It is well written and the story flows well. There scenes where I laughed and scenes I wanted to cry. The main characters are well fleshed out, with distinct personalities, quirks, and mannerisms. My only issue was the occasional change in POV mid-chapters. It could just be me and the brain thing.

Otherwise, I definitely recommend this book; I read it in two sittings.

RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ / ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥



SwiderskiSusan Flett Swiderski grew up in Dundalk, Maryland, a suburb of Balmore, (That’s Baltimore, for the uninitiated.) where everybody calls everybody “hon,” fishing and crabbing is a way of life, and eating steamed crabs is practically a sacrament. Although she loves her home in Georgia, a part of her heart is still hanging out near the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. The rest of it enjoys life near Atlanta with her husband and their two spoiled cats Dot and dash. Strange names, perhaps, but not for a couple of amateur radio operators. Susan and her husband, that is. Not the cats.

Find Susan at her blog: I Think, Therefore, I Yam.