Driving With the Top Down
By Jo
Apr 4, 2016 - 11:15:46 PM

DRIVING WITH THE TOP DOWN has an aunt, Colleen, and her niece, Tamara, who don't really know each other, going on an antiquing trip down south to acquire more merchandise for Colleen's shop named Junk and Disorderly which is a really cute name.  There is one adventure after another and not all of them good.  It was heartwarming to see them bond but would it matter in the end?

Harbison's DRIVING WITH THE TOP DOWN was a quick read with lots of twists and turns to the story.  There were stories from the perspective of each of the main characters - Colleen, Tamara and Colleen's friend from college, Wilhelmina, nicknamed Bitty, that they just happened to run into in their old college town.  There were also reminisces by Colleen and Bitty together and reminisces from each of them separately that seemed like they were taking place today.  The story flowed nicely except for plot inconsistencies that really detracted from the story.  The prologue set the stage for what was to come by introducing us to Colleen, Tamara, Bitty and their lives but Colleen's had nothing to do with the story as it was written.  She didn't have a daughter named Piper - she only had a son named Jay whom was twelve years old but Colleen and her college boyfriend, Kevin, got married fifteen years ago when she turned up pregnant with Jay.  How was this not caught?

There were secrets kept and shared, tears, anger, hurt, bad decisions, reminisces, interactions with husbands, friends, families, laughter, happiness, trust, some romance and love.  Kevin and Colleen had a somewhat rocky relationship since she didn't seem all in her marriage until she had her eyes opened while on the road trip.  Bitty, who I didn't like at first, had her edges smoothed out as did Tam.  The epilogue tied up the story nicely and gave good closure.  The endings were not what I expected when I started the book but were satisfying in their execution.

Harbison is a new to me author and I will give some of her other books a try since I had heard good things about her writing but I hope that there aren't plot inconsistencies in other books that I read.  This book should have a four star rating but I couldn't give it since there were significant details that were so far off.  Where were the editors and the proofreaders?

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