I received Things I Want My Daughters to Know from LibraryThings's Early Reviewer program. This is the fourth novel I have read by Elizabeth Noble and I think it is one of her better works. This novel falls into the category of women's fiction and primarily explores the relationships between the characters in the book, their struggles and frustrations. Things are tied up quite neatly in the end, to give a happy but probably somewhat unrealistic ending. Such is the genre.
At the beginning of this book, matriarch Barbara dies, leaving behind four daughters, a husband, letters for each of her daughters and a journal. Barbara's girls are of varying ages, lending to the story the opportunity to explore different times of life, that of marriage, children, dating, and the teen years. Each girl struggles with the loss of her mother, and in turn feels guilt, anger, and acceptance. Barbara's husband Mark, father to one daughter and stepfather to the others, also struggles, yet serves as the moral checkpoint and support person for the women.
I think Noble's books are generally very 'readable'. There is some substance here, made clear by the premise, but also humor, romance, and relationship struggles. This sort of book serves its purpose - to entertain, and pleasantly pass the time. I always enjoy a book set in England so that was a positive for me. It is not serious or in-depth enough to necessarily comfort or help someone in a similar position, in my opinion.
I couldn't find a picture of the cover to post (though there is one in the Amazon link I've provided) , but I wanted to mention that the cover image looks less like chick-lit than Noble's previous books. I think that may help Noble solidify her audience and find her new fans as well.