Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Hitting the Streets of New York City with "The Balance Project" by Susie Orman Schnall!

Katherine Whitney is skilled at maintaining the illusion that she is balancing it all. She is the COO of a multi-billion dollar health and wellness company, a wife, and a mother to two girls yet somehow she manages to juggle volunteering, helping out at the girl's school and being there for bedtimes. She's the author of a bestselling book heralding the relative ease with which you can have it all, but those closest to Katherine know how close she is to losing her cool. She only manages with the help of a team of nannies, a driver, a housekeeper, and her loyal assistant Lucy, who assists in keeping all of Katherine's balls balanced in the air.

When Katherine does something underhanded to Lucy, Lucy must decide if she wishes to continue working for her, or if she should take measures that will change both of their lives forever.

I enjoyed The Balance Project for so many reasons. The topic of the book is what really made it a stand out for me. Author Susie Orman Schnall clearly did her homework in regards to what counts as "balancing" one's life, and how hard balance can be to truly achieve. As an incredibly busy mom myself who balances working a 48-hours-a-week job, maintaining a household, raising three boys and having a reading habit, I could relate to everything that these women were doing and feeling. I wish that I had the help that main character Katherine had, and I appreciated the fact that the author truly understood the plight of real women everywhere, and that she made it a point to work these contrasts between working moms with help and working moms without help into her plot. Another plus about The Balance Project is that there is not an underlying theme that implies that women should stay home with their kids in order to be good moms. While that would be the ideal situation for many mothers such as myself, many of us truly have to work and we don't need additional guilt piled on us for that fact. The Balance Project has a great message, and it's one that I need to remember more often: balance isn't about doing everything perfectly, it is about doing your best with what you have to work with. It's a message that is especially valid in today's day and age.

My only wish is that the book had been written from Katherine's perspective. While I understood why the author chose to write it from her assistant Lucy's perspective I think that writing the story from Katherine's perspective could have shown the reader a different side of things. I would have even liked if it was written from both women's perspectives.

The Balance Project is a well-written and insightful book, especially relevant in the times that we live in when women are busier than ever. The characters all had something unique to bring to the story and the underlying message is something that we should all take to heart. I look forward to reading books by this author in the future and I thank BookSparks PR for providing me with a review copy in exchange for my honest review.

Are you participating in the BookSparks Summer Reading Challenge? If not, you're missing out! There are fantastic books to be read and prizes to be won! Check it out here!