The Shortest Distance Between Two Women

Published By: Bantam

Book Category: Fiction,

Reviewed by Beth Cummings

The Shortest Distance Between Two Women is Kris Radish’s sixth novel in the women’s fiction genre. Like her others, this book is likely to be a best seller. It is a terrific depiction of family life – analyzing the “closeness” between mother and daughters, sisters, aunts and nieces, and between good friends. And that closeness in those relationships that women form in their lives just by being women is what Radish sees as the “shortest distance between” any two of them.

This is a funny, sad, happy and touching story of a family of women (father deceased) in a small South Carolina town. Emma Gilford, youngest of four sisters, is finding as she approaches forty that she has been trapped by familial obligations ever since her father died. Her older sisters married and left home. Emma got her own home, but didn’t marry and was always the perfect daughter who could help her mother, Marty, with any crisis. She was always there for her sisters when they needed babysitters or house sitters. She was even available for her nieces when they wanted to have sleepovers away from their parents.

More than anything, Emma was also the one who made the arrangements for the annual Gilford Family Reunion. How to get away from this trapped situation without causing even more problems is Emma’s dilemma. Unfortunately, her sisters, Joy, Erika and Debra are struggling with even more problems in their own lives and have no interest in taking on the reunion responsibilities.

This is a fun book with great characters. It was a perfect book for poolside reading on a warm afternoon. It could lead to interesting discussions in women’s book groups too since the Gilford family issues are those that do frequently come up in families. I definitely recommend it.

Armchair Interviews agrees on his 5-star work of women’s fiction.

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