Adult book reviews, Book Reviews

I Thought You Said This Would Work by Ann Garvin – ARC Review


My Rating ~ Five Stars

RELEASE DATE:  1 May 2021

Format: E-ARC

Publisher: Lake Union Publishing

Source:  NetGalley

Pages: 301


A road trip can drive anyone over the edge—especially two former best friends—in bestselling author Ann Garvin’s funny and poignant novel about broken bonds, messy histories, and the power of forgiveness.

Widowed Samantha Arias hasn’t spoken to Holly Dunfee in forever. It’s for the best. Samantha prefers to avoid conflict. The blisteringly honest Holly craves it. What they still have in common puts them both back on speed dial: a mutual love for Katie, their best friend of twenty-five years, now hospitalized with cancer and needing one little errand from her old college roomies.

It’s simple: travel cross-country together, steal her loathsome ex-husband’s VW camper, find Katie’s diabetic Great Pyrenees at a Utah rescue, and drive him back home to Wisconsin. If it’ll make Katie happy, no favor is too big (one hundred pounds), too daunting (two thousand miles), or too illegal (ish), even when a boho D-list celebrity hitches a ride and drives the road trip in fresh directions.

Samantha and Holly are following every new turn—toward second chances, unexpected romance, and self-discovery—and finally blowing the dust off the secret that broke their friendship. On the open road, they’ll try to put it back together—for themselves, and especially for the love of Katie.



Thank you to Lake Union Publishing for providing me with a copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review!

Sam’s best friend, Katie, has cancer, and as always, Sam has dropped everything to be by her friend’s side. This time though, Katie’s other best friend (and Sam’s ex best friend) is there too. Sam has no idea why Holly stopped speaking to her years ago, or why she appears to still hate her now, but when Katie finds out her ex-husband has dumped her beloved dog in a pound, Sam agrees to make the road trip to rescue him, with Holly. 

Accidentally collecting a celebrity has-been on the way, they navigate bizarre circumstances, changed plans and a pit stop with a woo woo shaman, all in the name of giving Katie what she needs most right now. 

I absolutely adored this book. It was funny, emotional and downright entertaining, despite the very real and tragic subject matters along the way. Not only do we watch Sam and Holly try to untangle their destroyed friendship, themes of empty nest fears, impending motherhood worries, grief, dating and assertiveness all played a part. 

I often avoid contemporary books because I’m not a fan of the cliche romance aspects, but I’m so glad I picked this one up. While there was some light romance going on, there was nothing that overtook the friendship aspect of the story or was in any way unrealistic. 

I read this all in one night, I couldn’t put it down and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a fun, engaging read that will make you laugh and cry! Now I’m off to look up some more of this author’s books!

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