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When seventy-year-old Charlotte Perkins submits a sexy essay to the "Become a Jetsetter" contest, she dreams of reuniting her estranged children: Lee, an almost-famous actress; Cord, a handsome Manhattan venture capitalist who can't seem to find a bride; and Regan, a harried mother who took it all wrong when Charlotte bought her a Weight Watchers gift certificate for her b When seventy-year-old Charlotte Perkins submits a sexy essay to the "Become a Jetsetter" contest, she dreams of reuniting her estranged children: Lee, an almost-famous actress; Cord, a handsome Manhattan venture capitalist who can't seem to find a bride; and Regan, a harried mother who took it all wrong when Charlotte bought her a Weight Watchers gift certificate for her birthday. Charlotte yearns for the years when her children were young and she was a single mother who meant everything to them. When she wins the cruise, the family packs all their baggage—literal and figurative—and spends ten days traveling from sun-drenched Athens through glorious Rome to tapas-laden Barcelona on an over-the-top cruise ship, the Splendido Marveloso. As lovers new and old join the adventure, long-buried secrets are revealed, and the Perkins family is forced to confront the defining choices in their lives. Can four lost adults find the peace they've been seeking by reconciling their childhood aches and coming back to each other? In the vein of The Nest and The Vacationers, Ward has created a delicious and intelligent novel about the courage it takes to reveal our true selves, the pleasures and perils of family, and how we navigate the seas of adulthood to cruise—we can only hope—toward joy.


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When seventy-year-old Charlotte Perkins submits a sexy essay to the "Become a Jetsetter" contest, she dreams of reuniting her estranged children: Lee, an almost-famous actress; Cord, a handsome Manhattan venture capitalist who can't seem to find a bride; and Regan, a harried mother who took it all wrong when Charlotte bought her a Weight Watchers gift certificate for her b When seventy-year-old Charlotte Perkins submits a sexy essay to the "Become a Jetsetter" contest, she dreams of reuniting her estranged children: Lee, an almost-famous actress; Cord, a handsome Manhattan venture capitalist who can't seem to find a bride; and Regan, a harried mother who took it all wrong when Charlotte bought her a Weight Watchers gift certificate for her birthday. Charlotte yearns for the years when her children were young and she was a single mother who meant everything to them. When she wins the cruise, the family packs all their baggage—literal and figurative—and spends ten days traveling from sun-drenched Athens through glorious Rome to tapas-laden Barcelona on an over-the-top cruise ship, the Splendido Marveloso. As lovers new and old join the adventure, long-buried secrets are revealed, and the Perkins family is forced to confront the defining choices in their lives. Can four lost adults find the peace they've been seeking by reconciling their childhood aches and coming back to each other? In the vein of The Nest and The Vacationers, Ward has created a delicious and intelligent novel about the courage it takes to reveal our true selves, the pleasures and perils of family, and how we navigate the seas of adulthood to cruise—we can only hope—toward joy.

30 review for The Jetsetters

  1. 5 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    I don’t like it but I didn’t hate it, too. I’m Switzerland right now. It’s okay reading but not the marvelous book I’ve dreamt of so it means three let’s have a vacation with one of the dysfunctional families stars. Blurb seemed like interesting and I wished I could read some funny, entertaining dysfunctional, bat-shit crazy family members' stories! But you cannot always get what you want... Sigh... Pour me more wine husband! And stop eating my veggie chips, I'm on a diet, remember! I'm balancin I don’t like it but I didn’t hate it, too. I’m Switzerland right now. It’s okay reading but not the marvelous book I’ve dreamt of so it means three let’s have a vacation with one of the dysfunctional families stars. Blurb seemed like interesting and I wished I could read some funny, entertaining dysfunctional, bat-shit crazy family members' stories! But you cannot always get what you want... Sigh... Pour me more wine husband! And stop eating my veggie chips, I'm on a diet, remember! I'm balancing my calories! Smooth, soft, mediocre, entertaining, beach-side reading for me (even though Halloween, I still enjoy feeling the sea breeze on my face) but it’s not a book I compassionately flip the pages and so intrigued to learn more facts about the characters. I think the progression of the story-telling and presences of unlikable characters didn’t work with me. I found it a little light for my expectations and twisted genre taste. Charlotte, widow, 70, great prize winner of Mediterranean Cruise, is gathering her family members to join her for the vacation. Eldest daughter Lee has problems to find a proper acting job. When her carrier floats away, she needs to face the secret she kept about their late father. Middle sibling, Cord, keeping his sexuality as secret and youngest child, Regan, is my most not quite favorite character has a problematic marriage. Her husband confesses once upon a time he fell in love with her sister, Lee. There are too many dramas, arguments, emotional breakdowns… bla… bla… bla… Final the family members facing their secrets and resentments and we got our unexpected but quiet enjoyable ending. (Actually ending was the best part of the book.) I didn’t like those family members and I didn’t stand their dramas and their over exaggerated problems. I didn’t find the story as a sincere, poignant, emotional family drama but also I didn’t find this as a chic-lit kind of entertaining, smart reading. But at least I didn’t get bored and the idea of Mediterranean Cruise travels around the marvelous cities of the world is a refreshing plot. (Like last remains of sunshine at the dark and rainy day) Thanks to NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group to share this ARC COPY with me in exchange my honest review. blog instagram facebook twitter

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kim ~ It’s All About the Thrill

    I expected soooo much more 🤷‍♀️ Not the fun light hearted beach read that I had anticipated . Charlotte is 71 and is ready to have some fun! Her children have left home, her husband has passed away and well...Char is lonely. She wants to reconnect with her kids and find a hot guy. No really she does, she thinks about it all the time. So she enters a contest to win a cruise- that just happens to pay for herself and the whole family and she wins...enter lots of family drama, everyone seems to have I expected soooo much more 🤷‍♀️ Not the fun light hearted beach read that I had anticipated . Charlotte is 71 and is ready to have some fun! Her children have left home, her husband has passed away and well...Char is lonely. She wants to reconnect with her kids and find a hot guy. No really she does, she thinks about it all the time. So she enters a contest to win a cruise- that just happens to pay for herself and the whole family and she wins...enter lots of family drama, everyone seems to have secrets..which is pretty typical I guess. I just expected fun, sun and a good little rom-com. I did enjoy this book, it just was a little dry and lackluster for me. The cover is so bright and sunny I thought this would be a little more light and funny. Although there were some funny moments, it was more of a family drama. I had trouble connecting with the characters. Thank you so much to Ballantine Books/ Random House for this ARC via Netgalley.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Brandice

    In The Jetsetters Charlotte Perkins, a 72-year old Savannah widow, enters a contest to win a Mediterranean cruise. She does win and convinces her three adult children, Lee, Cord, and Reagan to join her. They care for each other but the Perkins family has difficulty openly communicating and all board the cruise carrying their own secret. The story follows the 4 family members as they attempt to put on fronts while navigating various European destinations. I felt Charlotte was portrayed a bit dram In The Jetsetters Charlotte Perkins, a 72-year old Savannah widow, enters a contest to win a Mediterranean cruise. She does win and convinces her three adult children, Lee, Cord, and Reagan to join her. They care for each other but the Perkins family has difficulty openly communicating and all board the cruise carrying their own secret. The story follows the 4 family members as they attempt to put on fronts while navigating various European destinations. I felt Charlotte was portrayed a bit dramatically as a fragile elder woman — She did, after all, initiate the travel opportunity. I liked Lee and Cord most, though no characters were without flaws. I would have liked the characters more if they had done more instead of primarily thinking about what they wanted to change in their lives. The Jetsetters isn’t a new premise, but one that I’m often drawn to: family drama — I definitely didn’t love it though. I liked Amanda Eyre Ward’s The Same Sky more than this. Thank you to NetGalley and Ballantine Books for providing an advance reader copy in exchange for an honest review.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Chantelle

    For being the Reese Witherspoon book of the month, it was pretty terrible. The writing was stilted, like a child wrote it. The narrator was not good either. There wasn’t really a resolution for most of the characters so it feels like it was a book about whiney adults who feel bad for themselves.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Laura • lauralovestoread

    3.75 ★ So I’ve mentioned before that I’m always drawn to stories with family dynamics that include complicated sibling relationships and strained relationships with parents. So that’s honestly what drew me into the storyline of The Jetsetters, because I was intrigued at learning more about this estranged family that goes on a cruise together. I enjoyed it for the most part, and I feel like the author did a great job of taking some heavier topics like suicide, alcoholism, and being accepted into th 3.75 ★ So I’ve mentioned before that I’m always drawn to stories with family dynamics that include complicated sibling relationships and strained relationships with parents. So that’s honestly what drew me into the storyline of The Jetsetters, because I was intrigued at learning more about this estranged family that goes on a cruise together. I enjoyed it for the most part, and I feel like the author did a great job of taking some heavier topics like suicide, alcoholism, and being accepted into this perception of what society wants you to be and really tackling some of those issues in a lighthearted way. As the book began, Charlotte, the matriarch of the family, sets the tone for how things will go. I really hated how she represented herself one way to her children and community but her true self and past she kept hidden. Then I realized that maybe we can all be a bit like that, choosing to only show the best sides of us. Each sibling had their own slew of problems and addictions, but I guess those are the things that always draw me in. *chosen as the March 2020 book club pick for Reese Witherspoon! *Thank you @randomhouse and #BallantineBooks for the gifted copy for review. All opinions are my own.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Meghan

    There were so many deep issues in this book that made the story interesting but I felt it was way too breezy/easy summer type read for the heaviness. I think the characters and readers deserved more life and feeling from it. Something about how it was written seemed discombobulated with the seriousness of the traumas the characters were daring with really didn’t work for me.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    The Jetsetters by Amanda Eyre Ward is March’s book pick for Reese Witherspoon’s book club.⁣ ⁣ This book is about a woman named Charlotte who has 3 grown children. She enters a contest to win a Mediterranean cruise for her and her family to go on. Her hope is that it will bring them all together. She wins the contest and they all go on this cruise. They all have their own secrets/problems that begin to get revealed as the story goes.⁣ ⁣ ❤️Review❤️⁣ ⁣ I really struggled with this book. This book is a ch The Jetsetters by Amanda Eyre Ward is March’s book pick for Reese Witherspoon’s book club.⁣ ⁣ This book is about a woman named Charlotte who has 3 grown children. She enters a contest to win a Mediterranean cruise for her and her family to go on. Her hope is that it will bring them all together. She wins the contest and they all go on this cruise. They all have their own secrets/problems that begin to get revealed as the story goes.⁣ ⁣ ❤️Review❤️⁣ ⁣ I really struggled with this book. This book is a character driven book, which is fine when it’s done well. Unfortunately it was not done well in The Jetsetters. Each family member had an outlandish problem/secret that just made this book really difficult to get through. A lot of their issues are actually really tough and difficult, but they aren’t addressed appropriately at all. Barely any of the characters have any true character growth. Charlotte (the mother) is blind to her children’s problems and will change the subject just to not deal with them. She acts holier than throughout the entire book, but is extremely hypocritical. I found this book to be extremely infuriating the further I got into it. The one positive thing I will say is that the writing was very easy to consume, which at least made the book finish-able. Overall though I had major problems with this book.⁣ ⁣ 1 star: ⭐️⁣ Do you like books when the characters travel in them? I love books that have a travel element to them. I get to explore somewhere new. ⁣ #familydramabooks #contemporarybooks #readingbooks #currentlyreading #destinationreading #vacationreads #funbookcovers #project50books

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kortney Lympus

    I HATE not finishing books, but this book was awful and I couldn’t waste my time any longer. Weirdly sexual at times (from the mother character??- didn’t enjoy lol) very choppy, no plot, seemed childish and not what I’d picture to be on Reese’s book list.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    Charlotte Perkins aged 71 has just lost her best friend, she enters the competition “ Become A Jetsetter” by sending in a racy love story. If she wins she hopes to take her family and maybe meet a man along her travels!! She is thrilled to win and spend time with her children; lLee, Cord and Regan. Lee is an actress on a break, she has gone home to spend time with her mother. Cord is a recovering alcoholic who is struggling to tell his family that he is gay and has just proposed to his boyfriend. R Charlotte Perkins aged 71 has just lost her best friend, she enters the competition “ Become A Jetsetter” by sending in a racy love story. If she wins she hopes to take her family and maybe meet a man along her travels!! She is thrilled to win and spend time with her children; lLee, Cord and Regan. Lee is an actress on a break, she has gone home to spend time with her mother. Cord is a recovering alcoholic who is struggling to tell his family that he is gay and has just proposed to his boyfriend. Regan is married and has 2 daughters. Her husband Matt wants to go on the trip with her, but she wants a divorce. This is a journey in more than one way as the family spend time together, we can see that they have their own secrets, which affects all of them. I love a family drama, and this was told in a sensitive and at times funny way. I wanted the family to reconnect and have a happy ending!! Thank you to Netgalley for my copy in exchange for a review.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Melissa (LifeFullyBooked)

    Not sure how to rate this book, some parts are a 2, some are a 3, so I guess I'm rounding down from a 2.5 Overall it is super uneven, the pacing is strange--drags in some parts and then the ending is very abrupt. There are too many POV characters and none of them are explored thoroughly enough to make us root for them. It would have been better to have had Charlotte be the main character and then glimpses at the others through her eyes and then tell the truth. But for Charlotte's surprising past, Not sure how to rate this book, some parts are a 2, some are a 3, so I guess I'm rounding down from a 2.5 Overall it is super uneven, the pacing is strange--drags in some parts and then the ending is very abrupt. There are too many POV characters and none of them are explored thoroughly enough to make us root for them. It would have been better to have had Charlotte be the main character and then glimpses at the others through her eyes and then tell the truth. But for Charlotte's surprising past, she is an ostrich with her head in the sand where it comes to her children and they don't help matters because they don't ever confront her or face their own struggles or problems head on with her (or even with themselves for that matter). There are some deep issues here--dealing with a hidden suicide, alcoholism, infidelity, and one character struggling with coming out to the family--yet none of them are handled with the depth that the subjects deserve. Because there are so many characters each issue is touched on but isn't emotional enough or deep enough to connect with me as a reader. So much of the book is completely unbelievable, although I did enjoy the descriptions of the tours they took and some of the history described, it again didn't go far enough to paint a picture and put me in the story. I never "felt" like I was on a cruise or in Europe. I don't even know who would really enjoy this--it isn't light enough to be a fluff read, but it isn't deep enough to be a real family drama. The cover is cute and the premise is great, too bad the execution of the premise is not as good as it could have been. I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book, all opinions are my own.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Skyler Autumn

    4 Stars The Jetsetters is everything I wished Jami Attenberg's The Middelstein was, a sharp and poignant look at a dysfunctional family trying to find their way back to each other. If you are one to judge a book by it's cover or perhaps by it's bookclub *cough* Reese Witherspoon then you are going to feel a little discombobulated by this one. If you were picking this book up as antidote to your staycation blues and wanting to envision yourself on a Mediterranean cruise sipping Mai Tais and wal 4 Stars The Jetsetters is everything I wished Jami Attenberg's The Middelstein was, a sharp and poignant look at a dysfunctional family trying to find their way back to each other. If you are one to judge a book by it's cover or perhaps by it's bookclub *cough* Reese Witherspoon then you are going to feel a little discombobulated by this one. If you were picking this book up as antidote to your staycation blues and wanting to envision yourself on a Mediterranean cruise sipping Mai Tais and walking the cobbled stone streets of Rome. Then pick up a different book honey this isn't the one for you. Although Europe is the setting it is not at all the focal point. The focus is on the family and their both individual shortcomings and collective dysfunction. A really great read when it comes to family drama but not so much when it come to mentally whisking you away to Europe. I would highly recommend this book if you enjoy family drama. If you read Very Nice by Marcy Dermansky or All This Could Be Yours by Jami Attenberg and that tickled your fancy then give The Jetsetter's a go. Quick and easy but packs a punch this book is great for anyone who loves drama drama drama.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Leone-campbell

    I was fortunate to receive an advanced copy of The Jetsetters long before it became Reese Witherspoon's Hello Sunshine Book Club selection for March. With that said, I can certainly understand why it was chosen. The Jetsetters is about a dysfunctional/functional, imperfectly/perfect family whose baggage goes well beyond the type one takes on a trip. Charlotte Perkin's best friend has just died. A widow of many years who was married to an angry alcoholic, she has three children. They are not the B I was fortunate to receive an advanced copy of The Jetsetters long before it became Reese Witherspoon's Hello Sunshine Book Club selection for March. With that said, I can certainly understand why it was chosen. The Jetsetters is about a dysfunctional/functional, imperfectly/perfect family whose baggage goes well beyond the type one takes on a trip. Charlotte Perkin's best friend has just died. A widow of many years who was married to an angry alcoholic, she has three children. They are not the Brady Bunch. She starts to feel as if her life is over. She needs something new in her life or she knows she will die. She decides to enter a writing contest called Become a Jetsetter by writing a little erotic short story from when she a young single woman. And she wins! And the prize is a European cruise. She decides to ask her children to join her in hopes of somehow bringing them all together. Lee is her daughter who is still trying to become an actress, even though she now is in her late 30's. Regan is an unhappily married mother of two who put aside her dreams to become an artist to marry and have children. She married Lee's old boyfriend! Cord is a businessman who Charlotte cannot understand why he won't just settle down. He is gay. Charlotte has no idea. So the family sets sail with all their baggage...pun intended! As they cruise and visit the cities of Rome, Athens and Barcelona the children (who are really adults) but hardly act that way, and Charlotte, begin to explore their individual problems and demons as well as disagreements and squabbles with each other. Fighting ensues and Charlotte does what she does best in these situations...smile and pretend nothing is really wrong. But as old wounds and secrets begin to surface, Charlotte must not only face and accept her children's flaws and love them anyway, but she must also accept her own regrets which she has carried like heavy baggage from her own childhood and learn to love herself. The Jetsetters delves into what a broken family looks like. It is funny, yet sensitive and heartbreaking all at the same time. We can all identify with family crisis of some sort. And as we would in our own family, we root for them all, feel their pain and embarrassment, and hope they can put their baggage away and become better people and a new family. Thank you to #NetGalley, #BallentineBooks, #AmandaEyreWard, #TheJetsetters for the advanced copy of this amazing book.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tammy(PeaceLoveBooks)

    The Jetsetters is an entertaining look at a crazy, dysfunctional family. Lots of emotion when reading from laughing out loud to feeling heart broken. While this was not my favorite of Reese's picks, it was worth the read!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Morgan Pearman

    This book was insufferably dull and its characters were so dysfunctional that I found it difficult to finish, but I was quarantined so I had nothing better to do.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Fareya

    While I tend to enjoy family dramas, The Jetsetters was a bit overkill and not at all what it promised in its premise, which is a breezy beach read. It deals with some very serious issues like alcoholism, suicide, infidelity but sadly does justice to neither and also lacks in seriousness and depth. The characters are just okay, the character growth is minimal. The writing was jagged and scattered and I found my attention wavering frequently. Not to mention the conclusion, that was very abrupt an While I tend to enjoy family dramas, The Jetsetters was a bit overkill and not at all what it promised in its premise, which is a breezy beach read. It deals with some very serious issues like alcoholism, suicide, infidelity but sadly does justice to neither and also lacks in seriousness and depth. The characters are just okay, the character growth is minimal. The writing was jagged and scattered and I found my attention wavering frequently. Not to mention the conclusion, that was very abrupt and didn't even make sense. Probably the only thing I liked was the history and descriptions of the cities where the cruise ship made stops. I was really looking forward to this because it has a fun cover, the synopsis made it sound very interesting and it was also the March pick for Reese Witherspoon's bookclub but unfortunately it was a disappointment. Will not recommend. **A free finished was provided by Random House. All opinions are my own.**

  16. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    “The Jetsetters” by Amanda Eyre Ward is a novel that explores the generational effects of family dysfunction. Of course, family dysfunction doesn’t just plop itself out of the blue. Dysfunctional parents endured dysfunctional parents and so on. The saga continues until one member breaks the succession. Ward provides the reader with the causes of parental dysfunction. It’s sad to see how each child absorbs the wrongs. I’m making the story seem bleak. It could be a totally depressive missive, but i “The Jetsetters” by Amanda Eyre Ward is a novel that explores the generational effects of family dysfunction. Of course, family dysfunction doesn’t just plop itself out of the blue. Dysfunctional parents endured dysfunctional parents and so on. The saga continues until one member breaks the succession. Ward provides the reader with the causes of parental dysfunction. It’s sad to see how each child absorbs the wrongs. I’m making the story seem bleak. It could be a totally depressive missive, but it is not. Ward writes subtle amusing moments, and there are some totally laugh-out-loud scenes that make the story a page-turning read. It’s a story of a widow whose best friend just died and she’s taking stock of her life. She realizes she is estranged from her children, and her children aren’t close to each other. She enters a contest to win an extravagant vacation for four people. She plans to invite her three children to vacation with her. She wins the prize and the children agree to join her. It’s a character driven novel, with each family member providing their history in the family and their current life situation. Ward does a fantastic job making each character flawed and recognizable. We either can relate to each character or know someone who has similar issues/history. And Ward writes them sympathetically and humorously. I am a fan of authors who can see the humor in everyday problems and issues. If we cannot laugh at ourselves, we are in big trouble. I enjoyed it and was pained by it. As I said, it’s relatable, and some scenes just break your heart. The novel comes close to being a vacation farce with a heartbreaking edge.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kristy

    Charlotte Perkins is 71, and her best friend has just died. Long single, she longs to be touched and loved again, so she writes an essay (a rather racy one at that) to the "Become a Jetsetter" contest to win a trip for her entire family (and to perhaps meet someone). Charlotte is shocked and elated when she actually wins, earning the the chance to take her three children to Athens, Greece and on a nine-day cruise to Barcelona, Spain. Lee, a struggling actress who has just returned home on a "bre Charlotte Perkins is 71, and her best friend has just died. Long single, she longs to be touched and loved again, so she writes an essay (a rather racy one at that) to the "Become a Jetsetter" contest to win a trip for her entire family (and to perhaps meet someone). Charlotte is shocked and elated when she actually wins, earning the the chance to take her three children to Athens, Greece and on a nine-day cruise to Barcelona, Spain. Lee, a struggling actress who has just returned home on a "break" from acting (and from her famous ex-boyfriend) figures she has nothing better to do. Cord, her son, a wealthy New Yorker, isn't thrilled about being trapped on a ship while he struggles with his sobriety. And Regan, an exhausted mother of two daughters, can't believe it when her irritating husband Matt joins the group. This will be a particularly fun trip since Lee and Regan haven't spoken in ten years. Trapped on this adventure together, secrets come out and the Perkins family suddenly learns more than they ever wanted to know about each one another. It took me a while to process this one. I really enjoy Amanda Eyre Ward's writing, and I have such a soft spot for her book, The Same Sky, which is one of my absolute favorite novels. This book is very different from that one, and it took me some time to warm to the pacing and the characters. Charlotte turned me off in the beginning, and I was just slow to get into the book. We learn that the Perkins kids had a rough childhood, but one that also bonded them together. Yet when the book opens, none of them are particularly close to each other--or their mother. "This day, and the two more excruciating days that followed--days of sand and beer-scented misery--would be the last time Lee went on vacation with her mother and siblings. Until thirty-two years later, when they became jetsetters." The book presents the story from not only Charlotte's point of view, but that of each of her wayward children. None of the kids are easy to like at first, but Ward's prose makes them come to life before our eyes. They are fallible, for sure, and it's hard not to feel a bit sorry for everyone. I for one am not sure I could handle being trapped on a cruise ship with a group of unhappy family members. "Oh. Charlotte's children. To her great sadness and bewilderment, Charlotte's three adult children were lost to her, and perhaps to themselves." The novel does an excellent job at portraying all the difficult relationships in the book, giving us an in-depth portrait of a complicated family. While the story is told solely over the span of their trip, we learn all about Charlotte's life--much of it hidden away from her children--and the lives of her three kids, even bits and pieces of their childhood and backstories. No one has had an easy go of it, for sure. How much do parents, and their actions, affect their kids, the book asks. How do families in general influence the people we become. They have so much power: both to help and to hurt. It's funny, this wasn't always a story I enjoyed, even though there are humorous and touching moments, but I recognized its powerful parts too. Overall, I would rate this at 3.75 stars, rounded up to 4 stars here. It's worth a read. I received a copy of this book from Random House - Ballantine and Netgalley in return for an honest review. It is out today, 3/3/2020! Blog ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram ~ PaperBackSwap ~ Smashbomb

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lorilin

    Prim and proper Charlotte Perkins was sad when her husband died, of course, but now that she’s lost her best friend, too, she feels unmoored. She’s 70+ years old and just so lonely. When she sees an ad for an essay contest—the grand prize is an all-expense paid European cruise—she decides to enter. After summoning a bit of liquid courage via a glass of wine (or four), she bravely writes about losing her virginity to a famous artist. To her surprise, she wins the contest, and, with her extra cruis Prim and proper Charlotte Perkins was sad when her husband died, of course, but now that she’s lost her best friend, too, she feels unmoored. She’s 70+ years old and just so lonely. When she sees an ad for an essay contest—the grand prize is an all-expense paid European cruise—she decides to enter. After summoning a bit of liquid courage via a glass of wine (or four), she bravely writes about losing her virginity to a famous artist. To her surprise, she wins the contest, and, with her extra cruise tickets, decides to bring her three grown children with her for some much needed family bonding time. She’ll be accompanied by her daughter, Lee, a somewhat famous actress; her son, Cord, a handsome venture capitalist and eternal bachelor; and her youngest daughter, Regan, a stay-at-home mom with a seemingly perfect marriage. The estranged family will spend ten days together on a ship, determined to bond…all while they sidestep emotional landmines and try their hardest not to reveal long-held secrets, resentments, and regrets. What could go wrong? MY THOUGHTS I love the premise of this book. It reminds me a lot of The Floating Feldmans—though that book was marginally better. While it’s always entertaining to watch a struggling family implode and then try to sort through the fallout (don’t judge me), I had trouble staying engaged with The Jetsetters. My biggest problem was that I couldn’t understand the tone of the book. Was it supposed to be funny and light? Jokey and sarcastic? But then what’s going on with that super dramatic and serious ending? I just wasn’t sure how I was supposed to feel about Charlotte and her family, wasn’t sure if they were going to make it out okay in the end. And that confusion impacted how I connected with the characters. The only person who had a believable, fully-formed, and consistent personality was Cord’s significant other. Everyone else felt unknowable to me, like a puzzle that I couldn’t solve (and what’s worse, I stopped even wanting to try to). I had hoped this would be a light and entertaining read with some heart, but unfortunately it didn’t deliver. Big thank you to Net Galley and Ballantine Books for the ARC. See more of my reviews at www.bugbugbooks.com!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey

    Yikes. I usually love (or at least like) a Reese's book club pick because I'm that kind of gal, but this left me absolutely stunned. The writing was stilted, not a single character seemed like a real person, and the big "mysteries" the author was hinting at throughout were total non-events. This book thought it was an ocean and it was a puddle. (This is a better turn of phrase than anything within the pages of The Jetsetters.) Way too many sentences ending in exclamation points, and not nearly eno Yikes. I usually love (or at least like) a Reese's book club pick because I'm that kind of gal, but this left me absolutely stunned. The writing was stilted, not a single character seemed like a real person, and the big "mysteries" the author was hinting at throughout were total non-events. This book thought it was an ocean and it was a puddle. (This is a better turn of phrase than anything within the pages of The Jetsetters.) Way too many sentences ending in exclamation points, and not nearly enough understanding of what character development should look like. I finished this book mainly because I, like the characters in this book, have far too much pride and no idea how to make healthy decisions.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Melissa Rose

    After seeing The Jetsetter's advertised as part of Reese Witherspoon's 'Hello Sunshine' book club, I decided to pick it up, hoping for a light and airy Summer read to escape the quarantine blues. Boy, was I wrong!! That is not to say that The Jetsetters was not a good book. It was. However, instead of a light Summer story, I found myself left with a novel that got more depressing as the book went on, and the characters bordered on unlikeable. In terms of narration, Therese Plummer did an excellent After seeing The Jetsetter's advertised as part of Reese Witherspoon's 'Hello Sunshine' book club, I decided to pick it up, hoping for a light and airy Summer read to escape the quarantine blues. Boy, was I wrong!! That is not to say that The Jetsetters was not a good book. It was. However, instead of a light Summer story, I found myself left with a novel that got more depressing as the book went on, and the characters bordered on unlikeable. In terms of narration, Therese Plummer did an excellent job. Although, I noted that there were many awkward pauses throughout the novel, and a few words were cut short (possibly during the editing of the audiobook). These issues were not a dealbreaker for me, but they did interrupt the flow of the narrative. Overall, while The Jetsetters was not the beachy read that I hoped for, I did find myself enjoying this book for the most part; it held my attention, which is generally the most crucial part of a story for me.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Shea Salyer

    Couldn’t bring myself to finish this one after getting a little over 200 pages into it. I just had no genuine interest in the characters and their storylines and I also thought it was just cheesy and scattered. I usually enjoy Reece’s Book Club picks way more than this one.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Stacie

    This book made zero sense, all the characters were awful and I hated every minute of it.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    The Perkins family is a little messed up - but whose family isn’t, really? Charlotte, the mother, is in her seventies and feels like her life is stopped. She’s lonely, her best friend just passed away, and the husband she never really loved died a long, long time ago. She’s got her daily Catholic masses with Father Thomas, her nightly Triscuits and cheese, and that’s about it. Her three children are distant and all have problems of their own: Lee, the eldest, is a beautiful but washed up Hollywo The Perkins family is a little messed up - but whose family isn’t, really? Charlotte, the mother, is in her seventies and feels like her life is stopped. She’s lonely, her best friend just passed away, and the husband she never really loved died a long, long time ago. She’s got her daily Catholic masses with Father Thomas, her nightly Triscuits and cheese, and that’s about it. Her three children are distant and all have problems of their own: Lee, the eldest, is a beautiful but washed up Hollywood actress who never quite made it; Cord is a semi-successful venture capitalist who is a recovering alcoholic and deeply in the closet despite having just proposed to his boyfriend; Regan is a mom of two stuck in a loveless marriage to Lee’s ex boyfriend. When Charlotte wins a “Become a Jetsetter” essay contest by writing about her young sexual awakening, she invites her three kids to join her on the prize: a European cruise. Although Ward constructs beautiful flawed characters who you end up disliking more than anything, the plot was unsatisfying. I didn’t like the endings or redemption arcs for any of them - I felt like they were all somewhat cheated out of true redemption. This was an easy read but highly forgettable; I felt that there was so much promise to mend the broken relationships in the family and give each of the characters closure on long-held resentment and sadness, but none of that happened. It felt like none of the characters left their silos and did the work to become truly closer to each other. It was an interesting romp through Europe and was a little bit funny, a little bit biting at times. But ultimately, I don’t think I’ll remember much about this book in the end. Thank you to Ballantine Books for the ARC via Netgalley!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Christina Kline

    I was lucky to read this wonderful novel in advance and write a blurb for it. Now that summer is nearly here, I can't stop thinking of that delightful and complicated cruise. Here's what I had to say about the book: "Witty, insightful, and full of heart, THE JETSETTERS is the story of a family on a cruise, and on the brink, in some of the most idyllic locations on earth. Defined by a long-ago tragedy and long-held grudges, grievances, and resentments, the Perkins clan has plenty of reasons to ke I was lucky to read this wonderful novel in advance and write a blurb for it. Now that summer is nearly here, I can't stop thinking of that delightful and complicated cruise. Here's what I had to say about the book: "Witty, insightful, and full of heart, THE JETSETTERS is the story of a family on a cruise, and on the brink, in some of the most idyllic locations on earth. Defined by a long-ago tragedy and long-held grudges, grievances, and resentments, the Perkins clan has plenty of reasons to keep secrets from each other — secrets that inevitably, over the course of their forced family fun vacay, spill out. The perfect novel to read in a pool lounger as you sip a colorful cocktail. Mediterranean sunset optional." I meant every word!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Beverly Duffy

    This was okay feels like I read this before. Enjoyed it Audio. Another dysfunctional family but at sea.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Deborah

    A mother invited her three estranged adult children on an all-expense paid cruise for a family reunion. I could not develop any empathy for any of the main characters. They all were leading false lives and had been hiding from their true selves for years. While the book dealt with meaty subjects (depression, suicide, infidelity, alcoholism, failure, not coming out with your family), it read as fluff. The family was self-absorbed, had lost touch with each other, and did not want to reveal their m A mother invited her three estranged adult children on an all-expense paid cruise for a family reunion. I could not develop any empathy for any of the main characters. They all were leading false lives and had been hiding from their true selves for years. While the book dealt with meaty subjects (depression, suicide, infidelity, alcoholism, failure, not coming out with your family), it read as fluff. The family was self-absorbed, had lost touch with each other, and did not want to reveal their messy lives to the others. My favorite characters had minor roles, Giovanni and Paros. I love traveling, seeing the sights, and learning about the history of a place. However, the tours at the different cruise stops seemed to be lectures and did little to advance the story. Do not recommend. There are a lot better books to spend your time reading.

  27. 4 out of 5

    MaryBeth's Bookshelf

    I don't know, this book was just kind of "okay" for me. I loved the premise and was definitely needing some "escapist" fiction, but this one fell a little flat. There was just too much going on and not enough development of characters or setting.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jill

    I loved this book, I NEEDED this book right now. A messed up family goes on a European cruise. First of all, I love a messed up family. Second, I love a cruise, and the descriptions of the tackiness, the "piano bar looked like it was out of Liberace's house if Liberace had 18 floors of marble with people in swimsuits milling around while he played," the "I shouldn't like this butler help me I do," just nailed it for me. I laughed out loud throughout this book, which is rare. Just what I needed t I loved this book, I NEEDED this book right now. A messed up family goes on a European cruise. First of all, I love a messed up family. Second, I love a cruise, and the descriptions of the tackiness, the "piano bar looked like it was out of Liberace's house if Liberace had 18 floors of marble with people in swimsuits milling around while he played," the "I shouldn't like this butler help me I do," just nailed it for me. I laughed out loud throughout this book, which is rare. Just what I needed to escape COVID quarantine stress.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Caitlin Reads

    Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC in exchange for an honest review! This was a hilarious book about family dynamics with a depth that surprised me! I was expecting a light vacation read and got more than I bargained for! The Jetsetters features a Grandmother who wins a cruise and invites her dysfunctional family along in an effort to unite them. Her three children each harbor a secret that will be uncovered over the course of the book. The family bickering felt real and scenery a Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC in exchange for an honest review! This was a hilarious book about family dynamics with a depth that surprised me! I was expecting a light vacation read and got more than I bargained for! The Jetsetters features a Grandmother who wins a cruise and invites her dysfunctional family along in an effort to unite them. Her three children each harbor a secret that will be uncovered over the course of the book. The family bickering felt real and scenery along their cruise in the med will make you envious. Some characters were definitely more likable than others (loved Cord's fiance). However, all of the characters felt real with their issues and flaws. The resolution wasn't as satisfying as I would have liked. Overall, this is a 3.5 star read for me!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Lynn

    I love the concept; a dysfunctional family go on holiday together to try and reconnect but longheld secrets are relieved and drama ensues. Sounded interesting to me, and the blurb and cover gave me the impression it would be a light and entertaining read with some heart. However the tone of the book was very different. The writing was easy to consume and the characters were complex, dealing with some serious baggage but I found it a struggle to care. I didn't feel there was any resolution or gro I love the concept; a dysfunctional family go on holiday together to try and reconnect but longheld secrets are relieved and drama ensues. Sounded interesting to me, and the blurb and cover gave me the impression it would be a light and entertaining read with some heart. However the tone of the book was very different. The writing was easy to consume and the characters were complex, dealing with some serious baggage but I found it a struggle to care. I didn't feel there was any resolution or growing arc to the characters, so it just felt like a story about whiny dislikeable characters. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher / author for providing me with a free electronic copy of this book for review.

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