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Review by Suze
Judy has to get used to living life without her husband. After he passed away her mother moved in with her to keep her company. When Judy's daughter plans to go abroad to give medical help to earthquake victims together with her husband Judy gladly lets her two grandchildren, Rosie and Sam, stay with her. Judy knows what it's like to be a parent, so taking care of them shouldn't be a problem. However, she didn't count on private school politics, an abundance of after-school activities and two fighting kids who are missing their mother and father.
Taking her grandchildren to school brings Judy into contact with arrogant parents and the natural leader of their group doesn't seem to like her very much, but Judy isn't alone, she does find a couple of allies. There also are a few other grandparents who are taking their grandchildren to school and Judy doesn't only make an enemy, she also finds a good friend and meets a man she'd like to get to know better. Six weeks of watching Rosie and Sam might bring a lot of problems, but maybe they're exactly what Judy needs to get her life back on track.
Days Like These is a great story about a grandma with opinions who isn't afraid to speak her mind. I loved Judy from the start. She's kind, but firm, she knows what she wants and she loves her family very much. It was fun to see her grow in the six weeks with her grandchildren. She learns about modern parenting, which she mixes with her more old fashioned ideas. I loved that she's getting to know her grandchildren much better because of the chance to spend more time with them. Sam and Rosie are no angels, they're regular children. They make mistakes, they fight, they mess things up and they are wonderful and interesting at the same time. Sue Margolis writes about them in an honest way that gives the story some lightness and freshness.
I liked that Judy's tone of voice is a little bit teacherly because she is of course experienced and sees herself that way. School politics are difficult to navigate, but Judy learns quickly that it's okay to disagree. She's looking out for her grandchildren and I liked that very much. She fights her battles and it's obvious that her grandchildren come first. The relationship between a grandparent and a grandchild is beautiful and it's a lovely topic for a book.
Days Like These is all about family relationships. Sue Margolis explores the bond Judy has with her own mother, her daughter and her grandchildren. The dynamics are fascinating and I love that Sue Margolis has chosen an older woman as her main character. It was amazing to read a story from the point of view of a grandmother and Sue Margolis has obviously studied connections between people and she knows exactly what she's writing about, which is why I immediately enjoyed reading Days Like These. It's messy and chaotic, exactly like real life, but Sue Margolis is always in control. I think she's written a fabulous book.
If you like great stories about family that are being told from the point of view of a grandparent you should definitely read Days Like These.