Good Luck with That (Higgins)

Good Luck with That 
Kristan Higgins, 2018
Penguin Publishing
480 pp.

Kristan Higgins is beloved for her heartfelt novels filled with humor and wisdom. Now, she tackles an issue every woman deals with: body image and self-acceptance.

Emerson, Georgia, and Marley have been best friends ever since they met at a weight-loss camp as teens. When Emerson tragically passes away, she leaves one final wish for her best friends: to conquer the fears they still carry as adults.

For each of them, that means something different. For Marley, it's coming to terms with the survivor's guilt she's carried around since her twin sister's death, which has left her blind to the real chance for romance in her life.

For Georgia, it's about learning to stop trying to live up to her mother's and brother's ridiculous standards, and learning to accept the love her ex-husband has tried to give her.

But as Marley and Georgia grow stronger, the real meaning of Emerson's dying wish becomes truly clear: more than anything, she wanted her friends to love themselves.

A novel of compassion and insight, Good Luck With That tells the story of two women who learn to embrace themselves just the way they are. (From the publisher.)

Author Bio
Birth—ca. 1965
Raised—Whiteyville, Connecticut, USA
Education—B.A., College of the Holy Cross
Awards—2 RITA Awards
Currently—lives in Durham, Connecticut

Kristan Higgins is the New York Times, Publishers Weekly and USA Today bestselling author or nearly 20 books. Her works books have been translated into more than 20 languages. She has received dozens of awards and accolades, including starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, The New York Journal of Books and Kirkus.

Kristan lives in Connecticut with her heroic firefighter husband, two atypically affectionate children, a neurotic rescue mutt and an occasionally friendly cat. (From the publisher.)

Book Reviews
A friend gave me this book to take along on a long flight home from our annual girlfriend reunion, and at first glance, I wasn’t sure it would be a novel I would enjoy.… Anyway, I full-out fell for this novel. It brought up so many issues women have with their bodies. Also brimming with themes related to family, romance, work, and friendship, it quickly became a compulsive read.… The Readers Guide is readymade for book clubs and weight loss groups. I can imagine some really lively and empathetic discussions taking place around this (ultimately) heartwarming book. (READ MORE…)
Keddy Outlaw - LitLovers

Good Luck With That is a powerful testament to the hard work of self-love… a paean to how it’s never too early (or too late) to be a little kinder to yourself, an inspiring meditation on how to embrace the supportive individuals in your life and stand up to the toxic ones, and a love story.… [Good Luck With That is] the story of learning to love oneself, and living a life that leads with that love, in all its joy, sorrow, failure, and triumph.
Entertainment Weekly

(Starred review) Higgins writes with uncommon grace and empathy about a fraught topic for many people: weight.… This novel is a winner.
Publishers Weekly

(Starred review) Higgins writes with her trademark heart, humor, and emotion, addressing the serious and somber subject of body image.… Highly recommended.
Library Journal

[A] heartbreakingly gorgeous story of female friendship and what it takes to feel comfortable in one’s own skin.

Higgins’ astute, perceptive eye to the best and worst of human nature enhances the poignancy of a sensitive topic, which she navigates with humor and grace.
Kirkus Reviews

Discussion Questions
1. The author chose not to reveal the exact weights and sizes of Georgia and Marley, leaving you to draw your own conclusions? How did you picture Marley and Georgia? How do you think body image affects women who aren’t overweight? Does someone’s weight influence how you judge them?

2. Marley is a twin without a twin and feels the need to fill that void through friendships and relationships. How do you think the ghost of Frankie has helped and hurt her through the years? What about her family’s treatment of Frankie? How much do you think the loss of Frankie affected Marley’s physical self?

3. Marley is someone who embraces the idea of “healthy at any weight.” She eats well most of the time, loves to exercise and has a pretty positive self-image. In one scene, she takes a hard look at her body and decides she will not only accept it in its current size, but appreciate it. Do you think it’s possible to overcome negative stereotypes you hold about yourself?

4. Georgia’s brother, Hunter, is negative, intolerant and often cruel. Have you ever met someone like him? How do you think his treatment of Georgia as a child sabotaged her in her adult life? Do you think it’s possible for someone like Hunter to be a good parent? Do you know anyone like Georgia and Hutner’s mother, who treats her children in a vastly different manner?

5. Emerson’s weight and eating issues are not romanticized—the difficulty of her day-to-day life, her isolation, the lies she tells others and herself, the constant obsession with food. Do you know anyone like her, and if so, do you ever discuss food issues with them? How has that been?

6. Emerson, Georgia and Marley are not the only female characters with weight issues in this book. Who are some of the other characters who have weight problems, and what are the issues they represent in the story?

7. Marley, Georgia and Emerson have a very deep bond. Georgia and Marley see each other more often, but both women still feel very connected to Emerson over the years. How can friends stay close without spending time together? Do you have any long-distance friends who are especially close to you? Why do you think Marley and Georgia remained so close?

8. Do you think our culture has impossible beauty standards?Are these changing at all?
(Questions issued by the publisher.)

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