It Can Happen to You


Author: Lynn Crymble

Published: 2009

Genre: Fiction

About It Can Happen to You: A woman takes part in a "renovate your life" project for a local newspaper.

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Review of It Can Happen to You

Penny Stevens is 40 years old, writes a financial planning column for the local newspaper, and is married to a man who cheats on her constantly. After a good deed puts her in the public eye, one of her co-workers convinces her to participate in a project that is intended to change Penny's life.

"I'm thinking about a 'Renovate Your Life' feature."

"What? For whose life?" Penny has stopped eating.

"It's amazing to see a person consciously evaluate her life on physical, emotional, financial, and spiritual levels."

"Uh huh."

"I've been searching for just the right debut candidate, and I think you're it!"


...from page 66

Although I didn't love Penny as much as I wanted to, I enjoyed every scene that included her friends, both new and old. Haggis, the dog, was charming, too. Penny found herself in several interesting situations and the incident involving the lipstick was particularly amusing. I wasn't crazy about the ending because it seemed to come out of nowhere and required too much explanation but I liked the idea of it.

This is the kind of book I read when I don't want to think too hard. I want everything laid out for me so I can just enjoy the story, the characters, and their interactions. And also with this kind of book, it's perfectly fine that I pretty much know how it's going to end long before I get there. It's the little things that happen along the way that I like.

Having said that, I thought that this book was, at times, unnecessarily vague. In particular, about three-quarters of the way through the book, Penny made a life-changing decision. Almost everything about that decision — how she went from making it to making it happen — was hinted at and all very mysterious. I didn't see the point of that.

Still, this was a light, fun read with some giggle-worthy moments and some touching moments. Fans of chick lit will most likely enjoy it.

You can take a look inside this book at the HarperCollins website.

Reviewed by Lynn Bornath from the trade paperback edition, courtesy of HarperCollins Canada.

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More Reviews

Jonita, The Book Chick, 19 August 2009
“I really did enjoy reading it, and I liked the character of Penny as well as the premise of the book.”
Luanne, A Bookworm's World, 22 September 2009
“A strong debut from a new voice on the Canadian fiction front...”
Marie, Daisy's Book Journal, 25 November 2009
“Awesome first novel. I loved it.”
Betty Gelean, Edwards Magazine Bookclub
“I enjoyed my trip into Penny's life.”
Lydia, Novel Escapes, 23 February 2011
"a delightful and heartwarming novel that had me laughing at loud"


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Added 18 January 2010.
Updated 28 August 2013.