Raney Moore has it all together. She's a partner in a law firm as well as a happily married wife and mother to twin teenaged girls. Her life is busy, but she manages to stay on top of all the scheduling, emailing, calling, and texting. She gets along well with her coworkers. She loves her husband Aaron, award-winning author and beloved host of a PBS nature show. Life is good.
And then she gets the phone call. A man she doesn't know calls to tell her that her husband is having an affair with his wife. She doesn't believe it. She can't believe it. She won't believe it. But her husband calls her from the airport, where he's been on a book tour, and he's about to get on the plane that will take him back to New York City. Raney asks him if it's true. He says yes. So she immediately makes a list of all the things he cares about the most. And she sets about to burn it all to the ground.
With the help of paralegals and her trusted assistant, whom she calls Renfield, Raney sets about to turn off his phone, cancel his credit cards, transfer their money to a separate account, and move everything out of their house. Raney has second thoughts, but when she reminds herself of Aaron's betrayal, she sees red and continues. As the coup de grace, she destroys is professional reputation in the scientific community with a few tweets and a handful of donations to anti climate change organizations. Aaron's plane lands in New York, and his life is suddenly in shreds.
This is just the beginning of Raney's journey to healing. As the weeks and months go on, she explores why men and women cheat on their partners, what makes sex so powerful, and what it means to be true to yourself and still be part of a couple. She struggles with blame and forgiveness, with anger and desire, with fear and authenticity. And through it all, she learns how to be a powerful yet vulnerable woman who doesn't have to sacrifice her own needs to please others.
Do This for Me is Eliza Kennedy's second novel and it's a tour-de-force of powerful emotions, kinetic energy, smart humor, loyal coworkers, sex on the beach, and a tricked out Fury roaring through the streets of Manhattan. Raney is the smartest clueless woman you'd want to be best friends with, and she doesn't hold anything back as she transforms herself into the woman she never knew she wanted to be. Do This for Me is intelligent and sassy, funny and moving, crazy and powerful as it looks at the subtle ways that women are taught to mold themselves around the men in their lives and how they can find their own voice, their own personality, and their own power. It's a beach read that can also change your life. My recommendation: do not miss out on this book!
Galleys for Do This For Me were provided by Random House through Penguin's First to Read program, with many thanks.