Thursday, December 29, 2011

BlogHer Book Club: The Magic Room

The Magic Room by Jeffrey Zaslow is my fourth BlogHer Book Club read and a truly extraordinary book. To say that I loved it, is an understatement.

Reading The Magic Room reminded me of watching two of my favorite documentary style television shows: 60 Minutes and Real Sports. I love the way the correspondents and producers on those programs tell stories. Likewise, Jeffrey Zaslow has a gift for drawing readers in and getting us to care about the characters he he writes about, in this case women of all ages, shapes, sizes and backgrounds who have one thing in common: they are engaged to be married and are in the market for a wedding dress.

In The Magic Room Zaslow tells about the journeys to the alter of a number of brides-to-be with fascinating research mixed in about the history of marriage and wedding traditions. He talks about how both have evolved over the past century and what that has meant for the family who runs "Becker's Bridal" shop in a small town called Fowler, MI, outside of Detroit, which has been in business for four generations. The bridal shop carries more gowns in stock than the town has residents!

I found that the description of the Becker family, especially how each generation has been torn as to whether or not to try to keep their business going in Fowler was reminiscent of of the fictitious Bailey family, who ran the Bailey Building & Loan in Bedford Falls in my favorite movie, It's a Wonderful Life.

A master storyteller, Zaslow had me hooked and in tears as I read his introduction to The Magic Room. I love his intention of writing a book for his three daughters, as a sort of "love letter" about his hopes and dreams for them, before they are of age to consider marrying and sharing their lives with another person someday. Reading this book was also very nostalgic for me, as it moved me to reflect on my own journey to the alter and my life since my husband Bob and I were married eleven years ago on September 23, 2000.

I highly recommend this book and am grateful for the opportunity to have been among the first to get to read it as part of the BlogHer Book Club!Please join our discussion over on the BlogHer Book Club page where you can share your thoughts and find out what others are saying about The Magic Room.  over on the BlogHer Book Club page where you can share your thoughts and find out what others are saying about The Magic Room.

In the spirit of The Magic Room, I thought it would be fun to include a picture here of me in my bridal gown, in my parent's living room, before the ceremony on Bob and my wedding day 11 years ago. So I will leave you with that.

If you have already read The Magic Room or decide to check it out in the future, I would love to know what you think of it.


Disclaimer: I received a free e-copy of this book to read for this review and to participate in the related BlogHer Book Club discussion. However, I was in no way encouraged to write a positive or negative review about The Magic Room.

Note: This is a cross post with my main blog Four of a Kind, as I know that some of you who follow this review blog, may not also follow me over there and I thought you might be interested in reading what I thought about this book.