Little Earthquakes

As every new mother knows, babies bring tremendous new joys and worries into the parents’ hearts. Little Earthquakes tells the story of four women sharing mutual support and secrets in the crazy-making year after their babies’ births.

Chef Rebecca Rothstein-Rabinowitz has a successful restaurant, a congenial doctor husband, and an egalitarian, happy marriage. Even her plus-size body does not bother her, but she has never found a way to defuse her pushy mother-in-law. Kelly Day’s exciting career as an event planner seems ideal for working largely at home while she tends to baby Oliver. Yet all her careful plans fall apart when her husband loses his job and turns into a complete couch potato. Married to a professional basketball star, Ayinde Towne seems favored by fortune. Her baby-raising guide has no answers, though, for how to counteract the temptations and stresses her husband meets on the road.

As in real life, there are no easy solutions. New, unforeseen crises keep popping up. Each woman struggles on as best she can, but it helps to be able to call on each other, as women have done in almost every culture. When Lia enters their circle, she brings a new perspective. Lia has fled her husband after the crib death of her baby. In spite of initial doubts, the three find their friendship ultimately healing Lia while giving them a new appreciation for their own good fortune.

Little Earthquakes is a fun and ultimately hopeful read. Jennifer Weiner, the author of two previous “chick-lit” books with some depth, seems poised to shine light on a whole sequence of women’s life experiences. New mothers, and everyone who has been there, will enjoy this chronicle of love and friendship.