The Last Laugh
‘I’ve googled it, how to die,’ Jenny says to Maureen. ‘It was full of climbing this mountain, swimming that sea, becoming a marathon runner and raising millions for charity.’ ‘Sounds like bloody hard work. You can make it more fun than that surely?’ Jenny discovers her days are numbered at the same time she discovers her husband is having an affair… Frankly, her life was tough enough already. Two tricky teenagers, her mother’s constant complaints, friends who aren’t up to the job and a career which has been spiralling downwards since she won ‘Sunseeker Tour Rep of the Season’ twenty years ago. And now this: a cheating husband and a death sentence. Enough is enough. Jenny vows to keep both catastrophes a secret. She takes her life – and death – into her own hands and decides to live as she did when she was happiest… in 1996. She plans a spectacular 1990’s themed party in place of a wake that she herself will attend. But will she be able to keep her secrets for long enough to have the party of a lifetime? From No. 1 bestseller Tracy Bloom, The Last Laugh is both hilarious and heartbreaking, a book about how to find happiness and live your life as though every day is your last. Perfect for fans of Marian Keyes and The Kicking the Bucket List. What readers are saying about Tracy Bloom: 'I absolutely loved it.' Jessica's Book Biz 'Laugh-out-loud moments throughout... worth the read just for the giggles.' Carrie's Book Reviews 'I loved it!' Goodreads reviewer ‘I just can't explain how much I loved this book - so instead I’ll just suggest you read it for yourself!' Rachel’s Random Reads, 5 stars ‘Had me laughing out loud and gave me proper tears of laughter, definitely a book I’m recommending – 5 stars from me!!’ Donna’s Book Blog, 5 stars ‘Full of laugh-every-minute pure joy.’ Books from Dusk till Dawn, 5 stars ‘I raced through this story, not wanting it to end…a hilarious and fast-paced read and I found myself laughing my head off so often!’ On My Bookshelf, 5 stars ‘Tracy Bloom writes with so much spirit and she knows how to make you laugh.’ Carlene Inspired ‘Had me in stitches… now being added to my list of favourite authors!’ Goodreads reviewer

The Last Laugh Details

TitleThe Last Laugh
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseFeb 23rd, 2018
PublisherBookouture
Rating
GenreRomance, Womens Fiction, Chick Lit

The Last Laugh Review

  • Dash fan
    January 1, 1970
    4☆ Poignant, Heartbreaking yet humorous.First of all I want to start by saying as a rule I don't read books that have any reference to the Big 'C' Word for personal reasons.So when I see the blurb for The Last Laugh I was drawn to it. I think it's due to the witty blurb I was hoping this would be a more light hearted read.I'm glad to say although it was emotional there was enough humour to balance it. Yes this is a subject that is so current and very very real but Tracy added her special spark a 4☆ Poignant, Heartbreaking yet humorous.First of all I want to start by saying as a rule I don't read books that have any reference to the Big 'C' Word for personal reasons.So when I see the blurb for The Last Laugh I was drawn to it. I think it's due to the witty blurb I was hoping this would be a more light hearted read.I'm glad to say although it was emotional there was enough humour to balance it. Yes this is a subject that is so current and very very real but Tracy added her special spark and she made it emotional yet light hearted, with the right amount of sensitive humour.I admired Jenny's strength and determination to live life after her diagnosis. Jenny decides to keep her diagnosis to herself, rightly or wrongly this is the case for many people so it showed us a different side to coping.You see Jenny's husband is a cheating scumbag! When Jenny needs him most he is busy servicing he's work collegue.After getting both pieces of news I would of gone to pieces.But not Jenny she was amazing. She dusts herself off and decides that she is not going to let the 'C' word destroy what time she has left.She's going to kick butt and have a rip roaring time. What better way then with a trip down memory lane. With the help from her good friend Maureen she plans the perfect party.The Last Laugh is very thought provoking, and will really hit home to cherish family, friends and life. It's beautifully written with much thought and sensitivity the whole way through.It will leave you emotional, laughing out loud, caring for the characters, poignant moments, it leaves you looking at life from a different perspective.I do think if you are sensitive like me then still give The Last Laugh a try as you might be pleasantly surprised.A beautifully Poignant Read that you will remember. Definetly one to watch out for!Thank you to Bookouture for this copy which I reviewed honestly and voluntarily.My Review is also on my blog website:https://dashfan81.blogspot.com/2018/0...
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  • Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*
    January 1, 1970
    EXCERPT: I look back at Mark. My chosen path. I've purposely not told him what's going on so far, which might appear strange but I cannot seem to say the words out loud. I cannot even bear to hear them. I 've tried. I've stood in front of the mirror and formed the words in my head and tried to force them out of my mouth but nothing comes out. I just stare and stare and stare at myself and think, is this really happening? If I don't actually say the words then maybe it isn't, maybe everything wil EXCERPT: I look back at Mark. My chosen path. I've purposely not told him what's going on so far, which might appear strange but I cannot seem to say the words out loud. I cannot even bear to hear them. I 've tried. I've stood in front of the mirror and formed the words in my head and tried to force them out of my mouth but nothing comes out. I just stare and stare and stare at myself and think, is this really happening? If I don't actually say the words then maybe it isn't, maybe everything will be all right. ABOUT THIS BOOK: ‘I’ve googled it, how to die,’ Jenny says to Maureen. ‘It was full of climbing this mountain, swimming that sea, becoming a marathon runner and raising millions for charity.’ ‘Sounds like bloody hard work. You can make it more fun than that surely?’ Jenny discovers her days are numbered at the same time she discovers her husband is having an affair… Frankly, her life was tough enough already. Two tricky teenagers, her mother’s constant complaints, friends who aren’t up to the job and a career which has been spiralling downwards since she won ‘Sunseeker Tour Rep of the Season’ twenty years ago. And now this: a cheating husband and a death sentence. Enough is enough. Jenny vows to keep both catastrophes a secret. She takes her life – and death – into her own hands and decides to live as she did when she was happiest… in 1996. She plans a spectacular 1990’s themed party in place of a wake that she herself will attend. But will she be able to keep her secrets for long enough to have the party of a lifetime? From No. 1 bestseller Tracy Bloom, The Last Laugh is both hilarious and heartbreaking, a book about how to find happiness and live your life as though every day is your last. Perfect for fans of Marian Keyes and Kicking the Bucket List. MY THOUGHTS: I am probably the only person who has so far read The Last Laugh by Tracy Bloom who hasn't found it hilarious. Instead, I found it sad, poignant and strangely uplifting. Jenny has attitude in spades. I loved her 'well f**k you' attitude, and her determination to live her life on her terms. I also admired the way she dealt with her husband’s affair. Maureen was wonderful. She shows the wisdom of age and experience. She sees and understands things that Jenny can't, because she is too closely involved. And she calls a spade a spade. We all need a Maureen in our lives. There are a lot of life lessons in this book. Lessons about taking a look at and considering the 'bigger picture', not just your own little role in things, about the importance of friendship and the different roles the same people play at different points in your life, about not being too hasty to write people off, and about second chances. I was expecting a light, fluffy, chic-lit read, but I got so much more from this book. I think that what people will take from this book will depend on where they are at in their lives. But regardless, it is a delightful and touching read. 4.5 surprised stars from me. Thank you to Bookouture via Netgalley for providing a digital copy of The Last Laugh by Tracy Bloom for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions. Please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the 'about' page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com for an explanation of my rating system. This review and others are also published on my blog sandysbookaday.wordpress.com https://sandysbookaday.wordpress.com/...
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  • Carrie
    January 1, 1970
    The Last Laugh by Tracy Bloom is the second book I’ve picked up by this author and she’s quickly becoming known to me as one to expect the laughs to come quickly. This book however has a rather sad side to the plot but the main character does her best to not become sad and still throws those one liners and off the wall actions at the user to keep us smiling.The story introduces us to Jenny who is a mom to a couple of teenagers and a wife of about twenty years now. It was time for Jenny to head t The Last Laugh by Tracy Bloom is the second book I’ve picked up by this author and she’s quickly becoming known to me as one to expect the laughs to come quickly. This book however has a rather sad side to the plot but the main character does her best to not become sad and still throws those one liners and off the wall actions at the user to keep us smiling.The story introduces us to Jenny who is a mom to a couple of teenagers and a wife of about twenty years now. It was time for Jenny to head to the doctor where she gets the horrible news of having incurable cancer but as if that isn’t bad enough for her when she seeks out solace from her husband she finds him bending a female co-worker over the office furniture with his pants around his ankles. Oh my.Does Jenny let all of this ruin her? Heck no. Jenny decides that if she’s going to go out of this world she’s going to do it on her own terms and those would not be with tears and sympathy. Instead Jenny decides to take a trip back to a time in her life when she was the happiest she can remember in her version of a mid-life, or end of life crisis in her case.From the opening pages I knew this book was going to contain one of those characters that I just couldn’t help but to love, a harried mom with her over the top answer to any situation that kept the laughter coming even in the darkest moments for her. Her horrific situation and her battle through dealing with it made the book one that should touch any reader giving it that up and down emotional roller coaster feel. When finished I will definitely be keeping an eye out for more from Tracy Bloom in the future.I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/
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  • Whispering Stories
    January 1, 1970
    Book Reviewed by Stacey on www.whisperingstories.comJenny had just been given the devastating news that she had terminal cancer, and most likely looking at 18 months to 2 years left to live. Having been to the hospital appointment on her own, she decided she needed to talk to her husband and went to visit him at work, where he was working late. Unfortunately, it wasn’t paperwork he was dealing with, although there was a filing cabinet involved, but some leggy blonde woman.After leaving the offic Book Reviewed by Stacey on www.whisperingstories.comJenny had just been given the devastating news that she had terminal cancer, and most likely looking at 18 months to 2 years left to live. Having been to the hospital appointment on her own, she decided she needed to talk to her husband and went to visit him at work, where he was working late. Unfortunately, it wasn’t paperwork he was dealing with, although there was a filing cabinet involved, but some leggy blonde woman.After leaving the office building, unnoticed, realisation set in, she was really dying and her husband was really cheating. Determined to be herself for as long as possible, she decided to forgo chemotherapy and put off telling her family, confiding in only one person, a women at the care home she works at, Maureen. Well, who else could she of opened up to? Cheating hubby, anxious 15 year old son, moody 17 year old daughter, mother who has always seen the worst in her, a brother who was never around, or her dad that had dementia, and this isn’t including ‘friends’ that are so far up their own arses.She might not of been able to stop the cancer from eventually taking her life, but she could have the best 18 (ish) months that she could have, starting with turning the clocks back to 1996.Since the death of my dad from cancer in 2016, I’ve avoided books that deal mainly with subjects like this one, terminal cancer and death. However, I’ve been reading Tracy Bloom’s books for many years, so I knew what the writing was going to be like. I also knew that she would take a difficult subject to talk about and make it into something positive and enjoyable, I wasn’t wrong.The plot is a humorous take on one woman coming to terms with her cancer prognosis and deciding to take matters into her own hands. She has nothing left to lose anymore, so with a new haircut, adventurous clothes, a slim body (though not intentional), and a no holds barred attitude, Jenny has returned to how she was when she felt like the happiest woman alive. She doesn’t want people’s sympathy, or their tears. This is her death and she is going to go about it, however the hell she wants to.I liked Jenny from the beginning. Some people might not understand her attitude of wanting to go to a medical appointment alone, or not telling her family of her diagnosis, but I could understand her perfectly. What I saw was a woman trying to protect those she loved, plus she didn’t have to deal with people looking at her sympathetically or trying to wrap her in cotton wool, she just wanted to be herself for as long as she could. She only chose to tell elderly Maureen as she knew that she wouldn’t sugar coat anything, nor go all soppy on her.Ms. Bloom has managed to take a hard to deal with subject and whilst keeping the seriousness of it, has written a plot that you can laugh along with. Yes, there are a few ‘gulp’ moments, but for the vast majority of the book I had a smile on my face.This is a beautiful book that has been exquisitely crafted and one that I thoroughly enjoyed reading.
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  • Melissa
    January 1, 1970
    4.25 StarsBittersweet! That's the main word that pops into my mind when I think about this book. So sad yet so joyful and lovely. Devastating, yet uplifting. I haven't read many non-psychological thrillers from bookouture, but they have hit the mark on the head with every genre it seems!On the day Jenny finds out she has terminal cancer, she finds out her husband is screwing a leggy blonde. Talk about a bad day. So in order to make herself feel alive again, she organises a huge party. Just like 4.25 StarsBittersweet! That's the main word that pops into my mind when I think about this book. So sad yet so joyful and lovely. Devastating, yet uplifting. I haven't read many non-psychological thrillers from bookouture, but they have hit the mark on the head with every genre it seems!On the day Jenny finds out she has terminal cancer, she finds out her husband is screwing a leggy blonde. Talk about a bad day. So in order to make herself feel alive again, she organises a huge party. Just like the ones she had in her 20's. She invites all her family and old friends to come along. What transpires is a lovely story of reconciliation, moving through regrets, and of love.To be honest when I started this book I didn't like it. I thought that Jenny was a complete dill. How could she act so blasé about a terminal cancer diagnosis. And I couldn't relate to her not being able to tell anyone about it. But as I kept reading I began to warm to her and the other characters, and by 3/4 through I was laughing out loud.I really started to enjoy the characters and the dialogue. Although I couldn't help but feel like her husband was a complete bastard, I was even warming to him by the end. Impending death puts everything into perspective I guess. The main thing I was surprised about was how much I was thinking about this book after I finished. Not only thinking about the actual book, but thinking about the main theme - How important it is to enjoy your life right now. How you shouldn't wait to mend relationships and how you should always try to be happy, even when life is really REALLY crappy. I like to think of myself as a pretty upbeat, easy going person. I have seen quite a few people die (occupational hazard of being a nurse I guess...) But I don't know how I would handle this if it happened to me. Would I recommend The Last Laugh?Absolutely. It was a quick, entertaining and upsetting in a good way. Death is a part of life, and I really enjoyed and appreciated this perspective. Great book!Many thanks to author Tracy Bloom and Bookouture via NetGalley for a copy of The Last Laugh for me to review. For more reviews check out my blogwww.booksbabiesbeing.com
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  • BIBLIOMANIAC MJ
    January 1, 1970
    " '...well, you’re starting to look a bit too thin, that’s all.’ I nod. How many times have I dreamed of someone saying that to me? Being accused of being too thin is like being told you’ve won too many Oscars in my book. Magical, magical words if ever they come your way. If only I didn’t have to get cancer to hear them."Jenny has plenty to cope with as it is: Ellie, her difficult 17 year daughter; George, her anxious 15 year old son, her demanding mother; her father suffering from altzheimers; " '...well, you’re starting to look a bit too thin, that’s all.’ I nod. How many times have I dreamed of someone saying that to me? Being accused of being too thin is like being told you’ve won too many Oscars in my book. Magical, magical words if ever they come your way. If only I didn’t have to get cancer to hear them."Jenny has plenty to cope with as it is: Ellie, her difficult 17 year daughter; George, her anxious 15 year old son, her demanding mother; her father suffering from altzheimers; her caretaker job at the old age home. But those issues are now pale in comparison to Jenny's discovery that she has terminal cancer AND that her husband of twenty years is cheating on her!Adding humour to the dead serious topic of being terminally ill can be a gamble of hit or miss if it's not executed sensitively. And this is where Tracy Bloom's talent stands out as she effortlessly combined the two, creating a beautiful story, with its emotional ups and downs bringing tears to my eyes, perfectly balanced with moments that had me giggling to myself on several occasions. The story was greatly enhanced with a 'liquorice all sorts' arrangement of colourful characters you won't soon forget. I loved Jenny's decision to be happy even if her world was falling apart, her resilience and her courage. I also loved her elderly friend Maureen... not only because I share the same name as her but her sharp witt and no nonsense wisdom made me wish I had a Maureen as my friend too. I love how the author incorporated her and the other folks at the old age home as an integral part of the story...old folks have so much to give if we only give them the time to give it. A book that surprised me with its many life lessons, it is guaranteed to make you look at your own life and question how well you're living it. " 'There’s going to be plenty of bad stuff that haunts your memories, Ellie. Loads of crap you’ve not even had nightmares about yet.’ She stares back at me, petrified. ‘So what you have to do, what you absolutely must do, is throw yourself into making good memories. Amazing ones. Ridiculously crazy ones. If you do nothing else with your life, spend it making the most crazy-shit memories you can to cancel out the bad ones. Do you understand?’ "A bitter-sweet book that I was sure would have me heartbroken by the end. It did have me shedding tears, yet it surprisingly also left me feeling comforted, leaving me with a sense of hope, inspiring me to cherish my loved ones even more and go out into the world and make some 'crazy-shit' good memories with them.I would like to thank Netgalley, Bookouture and Tracy Bloom for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
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  • ☆Dani☆ ☆Touch My Spine Book Reviews☆
    January 1, 1970
    This was a fantastic book filled with laughter and even moments that wrenched your heart! This book was one of a kind and I LOVED the whole experience!
  • Agi
    January 1, 1970
    I don't know if "The Last Laugh" is a new direction for the author, or she has just wanted to try something new for a moment - whatever it is, it has worked and Tracy Bloom has delivered a wonderful, poignant story. It is being advertised as a "romantic comedy", however I wouldn't agree with this, for me it was more poignant than laugh - out - loud, although the book had its funny moments as well - of course, it is Tracy Bloom's book!On the day Jenny (mum of two) finds out she's terminally ill, I don't know if "The Last Laugh" is a new direction for the author, or she has just wanted to try something new for a moment - whatever it is, it has worked and Tracy Bloom has delivered a wonderful, poignant story. It is being advertised as a "romantic comedy", however I wouldn't agree with this, for me it was more poignant than laugh - out - loud, although the book had its funny moments as well - of course, it is Tracy Bloom's book!On the day Jenny (mum of two) finds out she's terminally ill, she also finds out her husband is shagging another woman in his office. Not her best day, that's for sure. But instead of confronting her husband or even telling her family about the cancer, she decides to try and recapture the fun she used to have when she was in her twenties (because those were her best years, when she was the happiest) and with Maureen's help (an elderly lady from the care home where Jenny works) she organises a 1996 themed party, with Spice Girls, bouncy castles, sumo suits, food and her old friends from back then - what follows are tons of misunderstandings, reunions, makeovers.Jenny does everything that we forget that she has cancer and my heart really went to her. She was a great character, although to be honest at the beginning I wasn't sure what to do with her and what to think about her. I'll be honest with you, I didn't totally get why Jenny doesn't want to tell her family about her cancer. Yes, the circumstances, finding out her husband is cheating on her, I understand, she was in shock, but I mean, you are terminally ill? You'd want to share this with your family, no? However, it changed very quickly and she had my full attention and sympathy. She was strong, incredibly strong, despite having to cope with unfaithful husband, illness, stubborn, moody, stroppy daughter and shy and anxious son with some problems. She was very independent and didn't treat herself too seriously, and to be honest, after getting to know her very dismissive mother and always absent brother, I supported her in her decision of not telling anybody about the cancer. Even though the older, always knowing everything better characters are not my favourite ones, this time I loved Maureen, her friend from the care home, who took care of Jenny, even though she was the one to be taken care of. I really, really liked the end. I was afraid that I'm going to end a snotty mess but Tracy Bloom has brilliantly resolved this situation. I don't think the end was abrupt or too rushed. I don't have to know what has happened to Jenny because well, we DO know what has happened to Jenny going forwards. I just didn't have to read about it - I fell for Jenny and she felt like one of my friends and I think seeing her the way I though the book is going to end would break me apart. So huge brownie points for the author for doing what she did, for letting us to decide about our own goodbye to Jenny."The last Laugh" was an emotional read that will make you cry and laugh and maybe start to appreciate your life even more. It was about cherishing your life and those around you as well, but also about the fact that you should be cherished by your family and friends as well. It was bittersweet and very real. It was a touching story about relationships, marriage, being in love, friends and about making new memories. It was full of some incredibly poignant moments that hit me really hard. Let's make some good memories, guys. Copy provided by the publisher in return for an honest review.
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  • Aiade Guerra
    January 1, 1970
    The two tropes I avoid the most are present on this book: terminal illnesses and cheating, yet I decided to read this book on a whim. Why do I do this to myself? There were as many tears as I expected and not as much laughter as it suggests...What makes it a 4-star read though, is that it shows resilience and the importance of strong bonds through a flawed and lovely woman, and whew, it makes you think, specially because it doesn't cheapen something as strong as pain! It was incredible to see th The two tropes I avoid the most are present on this book: terminal illnesses and cheating, yet I decided to read this book on a whim. Why do I do this to myself? There were as many tears as I expected and not as much laughter as it suggests...What makes it a 4-star read though, is that it shows resilience and the importance of strong bonds through a flawed and lovely woman, and whew, it makes you think, specially because it doesn't cheapen something as strong as pain! It was incredible to see the development of some characters, even people I thought I would hate I started to accept (some out of pity, some because they were able to see the light - rationally - before what I think would beyond repair).Generally speaking, these kinds of stories are too much for my emotional tastes, so I know I can never re-read them, but pieces like the one below will stay with me:‘'So what you have to do, what you absolutely must do, is throw yourself into making good memories. Amazing ones. Ridiculously crazy ones. If you do nothing else with your life, spend it making the most crazy-shit memories you can to cancel out the bad ones. Do you understand?'’ If I were to change anything about it, I'd make the epilogue into maybe two long chapters, and only then give an epilogue with a more decisive path shown. The rushed feel of the end is what takes 1 star out of my review.Also, I'd like to hug Maureen and George. They were my favorite characters.
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  • Ana
    January 1, 1970
    Actual rating 3.5/5.Originally posted on This Chick ReadsWell, this book was certainly not what I expected. I haven't read any of Tracy's books yet however I do have a couple at home as they were recommended by friends who know I like rom coms. So, naturally I expected a comedy of some sort, maybe with a bit of romance and loads of laughs too. The 'chick lit-ish' cover fooled me too. But nope...this is definitely not a comedy, fluffy, or LOL read. Which doesn't mean it's bad, it's just really ca Actual rating 3.5/5.Originally posted on This Chick ReadsWell, this book was certainly not what I expected. I haven't read any of Tracy's books yet however I do have a couple at home as they were recommended by friends who know I like rom coms. So, naturally I expected a comedy of some sort, maybe with a bit of romance and loads of laughs too. The 'chick lit-ish' cover fooled me too. But nope...this is definitely not a comedy, fluffy, or LOL read. Which doesn't mean it's bad, it's just really caught me off guard. Now, I decided to read this book even before I read the blurb, which to some it might seem like a stupid idea but it's something I do once in a while but just for authors I was recommended to read. And Tracy Bloom is definitely an author whose writing style is totally up my alley and I'm most definitely planning on bumping her books up in my TBR pile.But back to The Last Laugh now.. It is definitely not a comedy but a bitter-sweet story about a woman in her mid 40s who's just received the most awful news of having cancer. Now I know a lot of people avoid books with the C-word in it (and who knows, I might be one of them as I get very emotional while reading them) so consider yourself warned. However, what I can tell you is that it's an interesting take on someone who's struggling and I'd most definitely recommend you read it despite maybe avoiding this subject in books. Jenny is a 45 year old woman who was once adventurous, full of life and dreams, used to work as tour rep in Corfu and throw wild parties at the beach. Fast forward 20 years, she's working in an old people's home (nothing bad just a huge change), she's got two kids (one of them struggling with anxiety, the other a loud teenager) and is married to Mark but their relationship is not what it used to be. And one would say she still has a normal life however it all shatters when she's diagnosed with cancer and given max of two more years. On top of that, the very same day she receives the awful news, she catches her husband cheating on her. So, she's got her plate full, that's obvious but the way she handles these situations was more than fascinating to me.Realizing she might not have much time left she decides to stand up for herself, re-creating the happy, care-free 1996 Jenny. In her own words, 1996 was the year she was the happiest, enjoying Spice Girls concerts, the sunny beaches in Corfu and the moments she fell in love with Mark. I have to say I found it a bit strange and I have mixed feelings about her fixation on the past. I totally understand that each of us creates memories and when life gets shit and out of our control we tend to visit a more familiar ground...so we turn to memories. But Jenny...oh boy she goes a lot further and this made me feel so sad at times. Of course I had sympathy and understanding for her illness, and even though she did an amazing job in hiding it from all of her friends and family I could feel she's deeply suffering. I am not much of a person who likes to dwell on the past, yet Jenny seemed so fixated on it, comparing her life now with the one she had when she was 25. I honestly wanted to gently shake her off a bit and tell her to focus on the future and the time she has. I don't know, again this could be me.While the story was interesting and kept me turning the pages I have to say I have mixed feelings about Jenny as a character. The book does open with a scene in Corfu where she meets Mark, however I didn't feel much of the romance. I just couldn't see them as a couple, didn't feel even their fights as strongly. I also didn't understand why she'd keep her diagnose a secret... but this could be me. But I found it not very convincing, on the one hand she's madly in love with this man on the other hand she doesn't want him with her at the Doctors? I don't know... it just doesn't seem OK to me. However, there was a lot I liked in this book. I do like how Jenny acts bravely despite the bad news, how she cares about her friends and family. But I absolutely loved how she transforms from this silent woman and 'victim' in her family to a woman who stands up to her mother, brother and husband. Overall, if you're fans of drama, I do think you will enjoy it. And as for me, I definitely will be reading more of Tracy's books.
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  • Inn Auni
    January 1, 1970
    I Googled 'how to die' and the first on the list is befrienders.org, a support group for people with suicidal tendency. The next on the list is ways to die either fast or painless. Nothing on the list that suggested 'climbing this mountain, swimming that sea, becoming a marathon runner and raising millions for charity.' That's the reason I got my hand on this book.We were introduced to Julie and the first half of the book was either her reminiscing her old self or telling me what's happening.'Je I Googled 'how to die' and the first on the list is befrienders.org, a support group for people with suicidal tendency. The next on the list is ways to die either fast or painless. Nothing on the list that suggested 'climbing this mountain, swimming that sea, becoming a marathon runner and raising millions for charity.' That's the reason I got my hand on this book.We were introduced to Julie and the first half of the book was either her reminiscing her old self or telling me what's happening.'Jenny discovers her days are numbered at the same time she discovers her husband is having an affair…'It had it's 1998 Stepmom moments in it to the point I was waiting for it to turn into Stepmom because the first half progressed in a slow pace.The second half was much better because Jenny was planning something with her life. And it's an eye opener that something like death was needed for Jenny to pursue her true self. In a sense it did made sense because Jenny had no restraint. Her death sentence was already handed down to her. What more worst can she get?The second half was the savior of this book. It was funny and witty and fun. It was what Jenny wanted. It was the highlight of the book. But it's also kind of sad that to get to the good part, I have to endure the first part. The five stages of grief are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. To get to step number five, I have to endure step one to four. It's not boring rather that Jenny being annoying. She was tip-toeing either she wanted sympathy or be treated the same way.However, I'm glad I gave this book a try. It wasn't romantic-comedy or tragic because it was in the middle. And the best thing I like was that it made me think what year was the best for me and would I relive it. I'm going to remember Jenny for a long time. She's the girl who can say it triumphantly that she made it trough high and low and still rock the ginger hair.
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  • Kavita Kumar-Karthik
    January 1, 1970
    This was heart-breaking !! The 'C' word I believe is the most dreaded word in the world right now. Sometimes, it makes life feel so unfair. Books like these teach us to live our lives to the fullest each day, to show our love to our family each day, to not take family for granted each day.. Each day matters.. you never know when you'll lose someone dear to you.. And while the thought can be disheartening and gloomy, there are so many people who regret to not have done more, to not to have said m This was heart-breaking !! The 'C' word I believe is the most dreaded word in the world right now. Sometimes, it makes life feel so unfair. Books like these teach us to live our lives to the fullest each day, to show our love to our family each day, to not take family for granted each day.. Each day matters.. you never know when you'll lose someone dear to you.. And while the thought can be disheartening and gloomy, there are so many people who regret to not have done more, to not to have said more, to not to have shown more..Jenny is living a life which is crumbling out of control. Her husband finds her boring, her daughter finds her embarrassing and her son prefers keeping to himself. And if the current situation wasn't bad, she finds out that she has cancer and also finds her husband cheating on her with a colleague.. Her mother always finds fault in her and keeps her absent doctor brother on a pedestal. Her father has Alzheimer.. Phew.. We are on a sad, heart-breaking roll here.. Hurdles after hurdles..Jenny remembers the year of 1996, when she used to work as a tourist guide and how everything was so sparkly then.. With her life shortened because of cancer, she wants to make the most of the time remaining.. She plans a farewell party for herself, though all the invitees think it is a simple get together.. She invites her absent brother, her long lost friends, her family.. all the people who matter to her.. Now, normally under such pressurizing circumstances, most people break down, lash out.. something.. at least demolish your cheating husband's car..I would've !! But not Jenny !! She calmly plans a 1996 themed party.. At first, I really didn't understand Jenny.. I mean, lady, your husband is having an affair and you are dying.. Show me some angst !! It was as if she's in her own 1996 world and that annoyed me.. But as the book progressed, we could see her trying to help everyone around her.. Her son, daughter, her parents,her brother..and even her husband.. I realize that if she had acted in anger, she might have lost the little family bonding she was able to achieve at the end of the book.. Lesson learned : Decide if arguments are more important then family. It might have taken so much courage for Jenny to forgive all those selfish people around her..And that's why this book felt good to me.. Though, I would have liked an epilogue in the end could've shown Jenny's family coping after her death, many years down the line.. her children growing to be compassionate adults..her brother realizing his responsibilities towards his parents.. her friends missing her.. Maybe they could have had a get together in her memory.. Something to show the impact which her selflessness had on others.. Thank you NetGalley and Bookouture for giving me this opportunity to read and review this ARC in exchange for my honest review
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  • Monica Mac
    January 1, 1970
    This was a really lovely book, covering a difficult couple of subjects. Jenny's story was sensitively told indeed and I found myself getting quite emotionally involved. For me, this wasn't one of those books that make you really bawl all the way through; I found myself saying things like "you go girl!" and "wow, you are really brave", quite a bit of the time. And I really loved Jenny's friends, even her husband started to grow on me a bit by the end of the book ;)I mean, HOW exactly do you tackl This was a really lovely book, covering a difficult couple of subjects. Jenny's story was sensitively told indeed and I found myself getting quite emotionally involved. For me, this wasn't one of those books that make you really bawl all the way through; I found myself saying things like "you go girl!" and "wow, you are really brave", quite a bit of the time. And I really loved Jenny's friends, even her husband started to grow on me a bit by the end of the book ;)I mean, HOW exactly do you tackle the fact that an otherwise healthy woman is suddenly told she has a limited life span AND she finds out that her husband has been cheating, on the same day?? Very skilfully, that is how. Read this book yourself and find out!I absolutely recommend this book. 4.5 stars for me :)Thank you to NetGalley and Bookouture. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.
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  • Suze Lavender
    January 1, 1970
    Jenny's husband Mark is busy with the deal of his life and when Jenny needs him to go to the hospital with her, he doesn't even make the time for her to be able to ask. She hears the devastating news that she hasn't got long to live on her own. When she drives to her husband's office for support she finds him with another woman. Jenny is heartbroken and decides to take a good look at her life. The adults around her don't show enough of an interest in her, so Jenny doesn't feel inclined to share Jenny's husband Mark is busy with the deal of his life and when Jenny needs him to go to the hospital with her, he doesn't even make the time for her to be able to ask. She hears the devastating news that she hasn't got long to live on her own. When she drives to her husband's office for support she finds him with another woman. Jenny is heartbroken and decides to take a good look at her life. The adults around her don't show enough of an interest in her, so Jenny doesn't feel inclined to share her news and she isn't ready to inform her teenage children yet, so instead she decides to go back to happier times. She'll be the Jenny she was in 1996 when she met Mark and she's determined to make several wrongs right again along the way.Jenny isn't going to think about her funeral. She wants people to get together to celebrate her life while she's still among them instead. That's why she decides to throw a party. This party should have the 1996 theme and everyone she now knows and used to know is invited. Jenny only confides in one person and doesn't let anyone else know she's ill. Will she be able to keep her secret until the party and will her decision to keep the image of a lively Jenny instead of someone with a terminal illness work the way she thinks it should?The Last Laugh is a beautiful poignant story. Jenny has the most terrible day imaginable. She hears she has an incurable illness and instead of giving her the support she so desperately needs, her husband is cheating on her. My heart ached for her and I had tears in my eyes when I read her news. I admired Jenny's courage and strength. Her reaction is dignified and she decides she will live with the news her way. She wants to relive happy moments, teach her children some valuable lessons and celebrate the good times she still has with the people she loves. I admired her courage and absolutely loved the idea behind this story, it's sad, but it's also hopeful.Tracy Bloom has written an original story. The Last Laugh is heartbreaking, but Tracy Bloom's sense of humor makes sure it doesn't get too heavy. Reading about what Jenny's going through made me cry, but it also put a smile on my face several times. I liked that combination very much. The subject matter of The Last Laugh is serious and thought-provoking and Tracy Bloom's creative way of dealing with it constantly surprised me. Jenny is a gorgeous main character and her story will stay with me for a long time.
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  • Emma Star Crossed Reviews
    January 1, 1970
    This review was originally posted on Star Crossed Reviews I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Thank you to Bookouture for letting me take part in this tour.  I loved Tracy's No-one ever has sex series so when I heard that Tracy had a brand new book I had to read it. Jenny finds out that she is terminally ill the day after her 40th birthday. She decides that instead of telling everyo This review was originally posted on Star Crossed Reviews I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Thank you to Bookouture for letting me take part in this tour.  I loved Tracy's No-one ever has sex series so when I heard that Tracy had a brand new book I had to read it. Jenny finds out that she is terminally ill the day after her 40th birthday. She decides that instead of telling everyone that she is dying she will live life to the fullest for as long as possible. When I read the first few chapters of this book I thought oh that's a bit different to the authors previous books and set myself up for a bit of a sob fest but in true Tracy style I didn't shed a tear until the last 3%. I really admired Jenny. She gives us lots funny stories and moments throughout this book. She is an extremely strong and brave character. While battling cancer she manages to deal with a cheating husband, a typical teenage daughter and a son with anxiety issues. Oh and continue to go to work and plan an awesome party.  Personally I don't think I could have done it. You would have found me under a duvet sobbing. The only person Jenny tells her fate to is Maureen. Maureen lives at the old people's home where Jenny works. I absolutely loved Maureen. She was such a good friend to Jenny. She was funny but also straight talking. She was exactly what Jenny needed. I loved the party and the flash backs to 1996. I love Corfu and really enjoyed the little glimpses we got in this book. The end of this story was perfect. I have seen other people say they thought it was abrupt or that they wanted to see what happened after. For me I am happy to live in the 1%. Tracy's writing is funny and poignant. She has taken some of the worst moments imaginable and  put a positive light on them. This is not an easy job but Tracy makes it seem effortless. Tracy has proved she can not only write laugh out loud stories but, also those that make you take stock of your life and live for the here and now. 
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  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    On its surface, this is a chick lit book: woman goes to tell her husband some heartbreaking news, catches him having an affair, and hijinks ensue.But it is so much more than that.For one thing, Tracy Bloom makes you care so deeply about Jenny that you will catch yourself holding your breath, praying that Jenny finds peace and contentment. I cried. Oh, how I cried. I worried for Jenny, and I kept hoping that Tracy Bloom would find a way to give her heroine some happiness.Despite everything happen On its surface, this is a chick lit book: woman goes to tell her husband some heartbreaking news, catches him having an affair, and hijinks ensue.But it is so much more than that.For one thing, Tracy Bloom makes you care so deeply about Jenny that you will catch yourself holding your breath, praying that Jenny finds peace and contentment. I cried. Oh, how I cried. I worried for Jenny, and I kept hoping that Tracy Bloom would find a way to give her heroine some happiness.Despite everything happening to her, Jenny is a survivor. She finds reservoirs of strength that she can tap into, not the least of which is an elderly friend whose life wisdom helps Jenny through some dark, dark hours. Another thing that helps her: the urgent desperation she feels to connect with the Jenny she was 20 years ago. Those were happy times for her, and she believes that if she can find that Jenny, she will reclaim some pleasure, some light-heartedness missing from her life.Bloom offers no easy answers. She knows, as do you, that Jenny's attempt to bring 1996 back is nothing but a diversion from the heartache she faces. Yet Bloom also shows that sometimes you need to find happiness where you can, even if it's in a Gerri Halliwell haircut.I enjoyed this book so much, even as it made me ugly cry. I loved Jenny. I loved the sort of mother she is, the wife she is, the friend she is. I loved the daughter she is and the sister she is, even though some of those relationships do not deserve her energy.Tracy Bloom tells what could be a maudlin tale with humor and affection. You will find yourself hooked.
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  • Jenny in Neverland
    January 1, 1970
    I’ve never picked up a Tracy Bloom book before, simply because I don’t really read this genre much anymore. And that’s cool, we all have our different tastes but whilst I tend to opt for a disturbing Thriller or a gory Horror, I do like to dip my toes in something different every once in a while. Then when I saw Bookouture announce that The Last Laugh was on NetGalley, it struck me as something I had to read. I loved the cover (I mean, who wouldn’t love that cover?) and it sounded like something I’ve never picked up a Tracy Bloom book before, simply because I don’t really read this genre much anymore. And that’s cool, we all have our different tastes but whilst I tend to opt for a disturbing Thriller or a gory Horror, I do like to dip my toes in something different every once in a while. Then when I saw Bookouture announce that The Last Laugh was on NetGalley, it struck me as something I had to read. I loved the cover (I mean, who wouldn’t love that cover?) and it sounded like something I’d hopefully enjoy so off I went to request it. So thank you to Bookouture for accepting me for a copy of this!The Last Laugh is a simple premise: The main character, Jenny, a mum of two teenagers and a workaholic husband finds out she has cancer. And it’s terminal. On the same day, she finds her husband shagging another woman in his office. So you know, the phrase ‘when it rains it pours’ really does apply to poor Jenny. Instead of telling her husband about her illness or confronting him about his affair, she sets to work with the help of an elderly lady in the care home she works at – Maureen – and an old friend from her past to put on the best, most vibrant party of all.After being taken to a funeral by Maureen, it got her thinking about her own life and ultimately, the end of it. So, wanting to recapture the fun of her youth that she misses so dearly, bring her family and friends back together again and have the best send off she could hope for – she organises a 1996 themed party with bouncy castles, sumo suits and wonderful food before time starts running out and before she tells her family her life altering news.Despite this being a book about someone with cancer, it wasn’t a book about someone with cancer. For the majority of the book, the fact that the main character has this awful, terminal illness completely washes over you. It’s a book very much about love, friendship, reminiscing about good times and making new, wonderful memories. There are some awfully poignant paragraphs and messages scattered about this book, some of which definitely got me thinking quite hard. Ultimately, what I came away from this book with, was how important it is to try and have fun. To make memories and be silly. It made me want to dig out my old photo albums and have a good old cry, really.Jenny herself was a wonderful character – at first, within the first chapter or so, she definitely came across as a bit of a cow but knowing she’s about to go into the hospital to find out her devastating news, you can definitely let her off. Despite everything that happens to her – including finding her husband shagging a blonde work colleague in his office – she is still an incredibly strong, capable and independent women. Which really is a testament to all women who, most of which, battle on vicariously through the hard times in their life. I loved all the little elements of her life running through the main story. Her stroppy teenage daughter, a desperately shy and anxious son who’s learning to come into his own, a missing dog, an unsympathetic mum, an absent brother – it was all so… real. I absolutely loved Maureen – her friend from the care home. I always tend to love a no-nonsense, say it how it is, elderly woman in a book. They’re so much fun and a early scene where Jenny tells Maureen she has cancer and Maureen ends up on the floor had me really laughing, which I’m not sure was the intention but Tracy did a great job at injecting some humor all the way through a book which could have potentially been very dark.The only slight niggle I had was the ending – I was a bit stumped when I turned the last page and realised there wasn’t any more. I felt the ending was a little abrupt and unfinished. I wanted to know what happened to Jenny going forwards. I wanted to know about her funeral and how her family was coping. But that might just be me, being morbid. And I suppose it would have made the book too long had all that been added in. Saying that, I kinda like that Tracy has essentially left it up to us to decide what happens next.I never wanted this book to end which is incredibly ironic given the entire book is about the main characters life coming to an end. It’s heart-breakingly poetic really. A delightful, yet emotional book which will make you laugh, cry and think about your life in ways that maybe you hadn’t done before. It reminds you to cherish the moment and cherish those with you in that moment as well.You can find all my book reviews here: www.jennyinneverland.com
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  • Wit & Wonder Books
    January 1, 1970
    **ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review**Tracy Bloom’s The Last Laugh was such an eminently inspirational novel that superimposes two devastatingly life changing scenarios as they redirect the course of Jenny’s life forever.Jenny, a mid forties mom of two, has been told she only has a short time to live, and then discovers her husband is cheating on her, all on the same day. And you thought you were having a rough one. Think again. If I had to imagine two of the worst bits **ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review**Tracy Bloom’s The Last Laugh was such an eminently inspirational novel that superimposes two devastatingly life changing scenarios as they redirect the course of Jenny’s life forever.Jenny, a mid forties mom of two, has been told she only has a short time to live, and then discovers her husband is cheating on her, all on the same day. And you thought you were having a rough one. Think again. If I had to imagine two of the worst bits of news I could receive, these would be, by far, at the top of my list. How Jenny handles this earth shattering news is unexpected and touching.Maureen, Jenny’s friend at work, says it like it is. What a straight forward, black and white personality she encompasses, and it makes you love her all the more. She helps Jenny tread through her feelings and anxieties with a candor that beats all. It sends her down a path of memories and feelings that reignite a passion for life and her family that she realizes she had long lost. Jenny decides what she needs is one last hurrah before she “goes away” for good. Discovering the last time she really lived was in 1996, she is determined to throw a bash in honor of that decade with the intent of leaving a lasting impression and memories of her that no one will forget. Will she be able to reconnect with so many who have moved on with their lives and can Jenny’s health hold up long enough to see her plan through? The whole time I was reading this book, I kept thinking it sums up all of the best country music songs every written. Jenny is now living like she is dying and dealing with a cheating spouse. Yep, that pretty much sums it up. What was so amazing about this book, is even though it dealt with a series of serious situations, it also made me laugh. There were parts that made me ponder what I would do in her shoes. She took loads of devastating news with such grace. This deeply moving story might just change your life. Give it a whirl, no regrets. After all, you only live once.4 solid stars!
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  • Rebecca Reviews
    January 1, 1970
    Tracy Bloom’s The Last Laugh is a moving, funny and absolutely memorable novel which will stay with you long after you finish reading.Jenny finds out that she has terminal cancer on the same day that she discovers her inattentive husband, Mark, is cheating on her. She’s also got a lot on her plate: an overbearing mother, superficial friendships, and a bratty daughter and an anxiety-riddled son. She keeps her diagnosis and her knowledge of her husband’s infidelity a secret. Jenny decides to reliv Tracy Bloom’s The Last Laugh is a moving, funny and absolutely memorable novel which will stay with you long after you finish reading.Jenny finds out that she has terminal cancer on the same day that she discovers her inattentive husband, Mark, is cheating on her. She’s also got a lot on her plate: an overbearing mother, superficial friendships, and a bratty daughter and an anxiety-riddled son. She keeps her diagnosis and her knowledge of her husband’s infidelity a secret. Jenny decides to relive 1996 when she was the happiest and plans a magnificent party reminiscent of her glory days. Along the way, she reconnects with herself, both learns and imparts some important life lessons and reconciles with old friends. Jenny is a really great and well-developed character. I absolutely love her! She is resilient, resourceful, and relatable. I’ve never rooted for a character so much before. She is just so funny and realistic, from dyeing her hair like Ginger Spice to dancing in her kitchen in a sumo suit.I was really curious to see how a novel with such serious themes like infidelity and death could be funny and moving. Bloom does an excellent job combining humour and darkness with well-written characters and a steadily-paced and poignant plot. I both laughed and cried my way through reading. Although this isn’t your typically inspirational book, it does make you think about your own life. Long after I finished reading, I found myself coming back to Jenny’s experiences and reflecting on the things she learns. It is never too late to fix things in your life and to reconnect with yourself and your loved ones. I like the hopeful and somewhat ambiguous ending. I do wish that Mark’s infidelity and George’s anxiety issues could have been more fleshed out. I also would have liked more development with Jenny’s relationship with her daughter, Ellie. However, I think that given the limited timeframe, Bloom handles these issues pretty well. Mark does experience growth as he slowly steps up in his parenting and tries to be a better husband while George learns to cope with his anxiety with support from his parents.The Last Laugh is unique, relatable and poignant. You will laugh, cry, and reflect on your own life. I would recommend this to absolutely everyone. If the rest of Tracy Bloom’s books are half as good as this, I can’t wait to check them out.Thank you to NetGalley and Bookouture for this book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Nina
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of The last laugh in exchange for honest review.I believe that the book is still being edited, so I am only going to talk about its content and not the writing. I wouldn’t call it a romantic comedy or comedy, it’s rather a family drama, although I did smile at few jokes.The main character Jenny is not having a great day. First, she is diagnosed with terminal cancer. Then she finds out her husband is having an affair. And the last twenty years Thank you Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of The last laugh in exchange for honest review.I believe that the book is still being edited, so I am only going to talk about its content and not the writing. I wouldn’t call it a romantic comedy or comedy, it’s rather a family drama, although I did smile at few jokes.The main character Jenny is not having a great day. First, she is diagnosed with terminal cancer. Then she finds out her husband is having an affair. And the last twenty years of her life were not that great either. Her career is spiraling downwards. Mother is a piece of work. Brother lives far away and doesn’t seem interested to stay in touch. Children are troublesome teenagers. And some shitty friends.It was sad and frustrating to read about Jenny’s life, it was also hard to care for her, especially at the beginning. I did warm up to her a little by the end of the book.I was mainly attracted by the description, I like that type of books that give you a boost and inspiration and remind you not to waste your precious days, not to wait for a death sentence to start living, follow your dreams etc.I was a bit disappointed that all Jenny kept thinking about is summer of 1996 and how happy she was then. The top moment of her life is a one single party. And she wants to recreate it. Is that really where her aspiration ends? Surely there has to be some other happy memories: wedding, honey moon, child birth. I expected more from Jenny’s “bucket list”.There were also a few things that were not sensible and I couldn’t find an explanation for. For example, that Jenny couldn’t tell her husband about her health problem even before she caught him cheating. Or that he wouldn’t tell her his salary “not to jinx it”. After 20 years of marriage and 2 kids? How do you plan family budget, college fund, retirement plan?In a way I did get an inspiration I was looking for mostly by reading how NOT to live your life. Over all I think, that the main idea of The last laugh is not new but its good. I only wish Tracy Bloom dug dipper and made it more meaningful.
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  • Gem ~ Bee
    January 1, 1970
    After a couple of emotionally heavy books I'll admit I was a bit hesitant at picking up The Last Laugh, knowing from the blurb it was about finding out you are dying the same day you discover your husband's infidelity. It was another blogger that prompted me to start it after a glowingly positive review (so thank you Jenny In Neverland). I am so glad I did. This book is uplifting, life-affirming, and most of all funny! Poignant? Yes. Miserable? Not a chance!I felt I could relate to Jenny in many After a couple of emotionally heavy books I'll admit I was a bit hesitant at picking up The Last Laugh, knowing from the blurb it was about finding out you are dying the same day you discover your husband's infidelity. It was another blogger that prompted me to start it after a glowingly positive review (so thank you Jenny In Neverland). I am so glad I did. This book is uplifting, life-affirming, and most of all funny! Poignant? Yes. Miserable? Not a chance!I felt I could relate to Jenny in many ways: that sense of identity loss, being in the background at times taken for granted, and the weight of responsibilities at juggling various roles (daughter, sister, mother, wife, friend, carer, worker) are things I'm very familiar with. Life doesn't always work out how you hoped. You lose touch with good friends. You don't get to pursue your dream job. You find the juggling act isn't as straightforward as you thought. You reminisce fondly of easier, simpler, carefree times; I particularly loved the 90's nostalgia that weaves through this book. Life throws many curveballs. You never know how you'd react in the circumstances Jenny finds herself in, but I confidently think I'd follow in her footsteps (I definitely wouldn't become a marathon runner that's for sure) so that connection made her real and genuine to me.I absolutely loved the many laugh-out-loud comedy moments: the hilarious Maureen (everyone needs a Maureen!), the fantastic way Jenny brings her brother in to line, the comedy antics of her friends etc. Without any spoilers there is a section in the book that had me crying tears of absolute joy that was beautifully written.The ending was unexpected but I adored it; there was a sense of validity to it for Jenny that I felt was just and didn't diminish her fierce fearlessness in confronting her bleak reality. The book definitely leaves you thinking about what is important in life, what we sometimes lose sight of whilst prioritising the wrong things, and how we can all learn from our mistakes.
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  • Mary Thomas
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to Netgalley for my copy. 4.5*Jenny receives devastating health news after "celebrating" her birthday with her family. Husband Mark is preoccupied with a huge takeover in work, daughter Ellie 17 cares more about what the coolest girl Phoebe thinks and finally 15 year old son George is a bundle of anxiety.Jenny works in a care home where her elderly friend Maureen lives. I loved Maureen, the kind of feisty sweary old women that is so engaging and endearing. Jenny reminisces back to 1996 wh Thanks to Netgalley for my copy. 4.5*Jenny receives devastating health news after "celebrating" her birthday with her family. Husband Mark is preoccupied with a huge takeover in work, daughter Ellie 17 cares more about what the coolest girl Phoebe thinks and finally 15 year old son George is a bundle of anxiety.Jenny works in a care home where her elderly friend Maureen lives. I loved Maureen, the kind of feisty sweary old women that is so engaging and endearing. Jenny reminisces back to 1996 when she felt her life was at the high point before work and family and it's subsequent stresses have dulled her personality.With the help of Maureen they throw a 1996 party and invite Jenny and Mark's old friends and family to try and rekindle some life before it's too late. There are some genuine laugh out loud moments and some definite tear-jerking ones in this book. Tracy Bloom invents some wonderfully colourful characters and her writing is masterful in balancing the laughs with the tears in what could have been a depressing story. Having said that I still thought Mark was an ass. A thoroughly enjoyable read.
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  • Tara
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 stars.4.5 stars.Although a new author to me, if Tracy Bloom’s other books are like The Last Laugh she definitely has a new fan.Yes, on the surface it doesn’t seem like a novel about dying and infidelity would be especially enjoyable but it really is – plus it’s about so much more than that.Tracy writes with a sort of gallows humour that I really like but also with so much emotion, I felt instantly connected to the main character, Jenny, like I was part of her life.It helped also that there i 4.5 stars.4.5 stars.Although a new author to me, if Tracy Bloom’s other books are like The Last Laugh she definitely has a new fan.Yes, on the surface it doesn’t seem like a novel about dying and infidelity would be especially enjoyable but it really is – plus it’s about so much more than that.Tracy writes with a sort of gallows humour that I really like but also with so much emotion, I felt instantly connected to the main character, Jenny, like I was part of her life.It helped also that there is a massive hit of nostalgia for the year 1996 in this book, which was not only a particularly good year for Jenny but also for me (I was still at uni having the time of my life). Some of her memories brought a huge smile to my face.While death is obviously a lingering theme, family and friendships play a huge part in this book – especially as Jenny attempts to get everything in order (I’ll warn you now, I shed some tears).The fact that she’s only a couple of years older than me certainly hit home and, after I had finished, I definitely felt thankful to have my health but it also inspired to try and make the most of the life I have.If there is one small criticism it would be that I felt like some fairly big issues were resolved a little too easily – such her husband’s infidelity but also her son’s clinically diagnosed anxiety. Although, it was only a couple of hours after I had finished that I really thought about that. At the time I was just happy that it ended the way it did. It certainly didn’t put me off from immediately going in search of her other books – of which, I am happy to say, there are several.With thanks to Bookouture (via NetGalley) for the ARC in return for my honest opinion.
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  • Lisa
    January 1, 1970
    I wasn’t sure from the blurb that I would like this book, it seemed like it could be a bit morbid. However, it was a very funny and uplifting read, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Jenny is diagnosed with terminal cancer, and her marriage is falling apart. Rather than wallow, she decides reinvent herself as her favourite version of herself, the 1996 version. What follows is a very entertaining read as she throws herself a wake and lives life to the full while she can. I really liked Jenny, she was a I wasn’t sure from the blurb that I would like this book, it seemed like it could be a bit morbid. However, it was a very funny and uplifting read, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Jenny is diagnosed with terminal cancer, and her marriage is falling apart. Rather than wallow, she decides reinvent herself as her favourite version of herself, the 1996 version. What follows is a very entertaining read as she throws herself a wake and lives life to the full while she can. I really liked Jenny, she was a great protagonist, very relatable. Her spirit was inspirational, she was funny, and I was very engaged with her story. I didn’t like her husband at all, he wasn’t very likeable. There were some brilliant secondary characters too who added plenty of fun to the plot. I would definitely recommend this book.
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  • Dawn
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you netgalley and Bookouture for this arc in exchange for an honest review. Jenny and Mark met in 1996, followed by marriage, 2 kids and a dog. Mark is working towards his life goals, their daughter Ellie, is a nightmare and their son George is a quiet nervous boy. Jenny's world is rocked when she is diagnosed with cancer and when she goes to tell Mark, well it doesn't go as planned. With the help of her friend Maureen, jenny embarks on a party to celebrate her life while rectifying some m Thank you netgalley and Bookouture for this arc in exchange for an honest review. Jenny and Mark met in 1996, followed by marriage, 2 kids and a dog. Mark is working towards his life goals, their daughter Ellie, is a nightmare and their son George is a quiet nervous boy. Jenny's world is rocked when she is diagnosed with cancer and when she goes to tell Mark, well it doesn't go as planned. With the help of her friend Maureen, jenny embarks on a party to celebrate her life while rectifying some mistakes along the way. Oh this was such a brilliant read. I was engrossed and laughed out loud and welled up. It was great!
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  • Teena in Toronto
    January 1, 1970
    Jenny is in her mid-forties. She is married to Mark, who she met twenty years ago when she was a tour rep in Greece and he was on vacation. Mark is now successful and working long hours and is rarely around. Jenny works in a retirement home as an entertainment coordinator for the residents. Jenny and Mark have two teenage children ... a daughter who only cares about her best friend and a son who has anxiety issues. Jenny's mother is judgmental towards her. Jenny's father has dementia and she tak Jenny is in her mid-forties. She is married to Mark, who she met twenty years ago when she was a tour rep in Greece and he was on vacation. Mark is now successful and working long hours and is rarely around. Jenny works in a retirement home as an entertainment coordinator for the residents. Jenny and Mark have two teenage children ... a daughter who only cares about her best friend and a son who has anxiety issues. Jenny's mother is judgmental towards her. Jenny's father has dementia and she takes care of him when her mother needs to run errands.Jenny has been having health issues. Her doctor tells her that she has terminal cancer with 18 to 24 months left. She heads over to tell her husband the news only to find him bent over a filing cabinet having sex with a blonde. So she backs away and keeps her cancer and her husband's affair a secret.Jenny feels her life peaked in 1996. She had a great job as a tour rep, she had great fun friends and she looked and felt great. That year, her 25th birthday party was the best memory ever! Rather than having a wake after she's gone, she decides to recreate that birthday while she is still here to enjoy it (her recent birthday was a disappointment).This was the third book I read by this author and I thought it was okay. I liked the writing style. It's written in first person perspective from Jenny's point of view. Given the subject matter, it was a bit of a tough book to read. As a head's up, there is swearing.I wasn't crazy about the characters. Jenny was a doormat and had let life pass her by. Her family (except for her son) treated her like crap and she took it. Mark had turned into an unsupporting cold jerk and she didn't feel close enough to him to let him know there was something wrong or to have with her at her doctor's appointment. It was hard to believe she would put up with the backtalk she did from her daughter. With the way her mother treated her, I'm surprised she did anything for her when she obviously favoured Jenny's brother, Antony, a surgeon, who was too busy to spend time with the family. Jenny had fallen into a job at the retirement home and was too lazy to move on and do something else. She let her old friendships go and her current friends are more like acquaintances. She had no one to turn to when she received such devastating news. I like that Jenny finally grew a backbone as the story progressed. Blog review post: http://www.teenaintoronto.com/2018/02...
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  • Grace J Reviewerlady
    January 1, 1970
    I feel as if I've been on a roller coaster whilst reading The Last Laugh by Tracy Bloom .. highs and lows, happy and sad, and all at breakneck speed. Never a dull moment!A none-too-welcome health diagnosis sets Jenny on the path to recapture the best years of her lift and, with the help of her friend Maureen - who does frank and candid like no-one else - she goes about recreating her 25th birthday party and getting back in touch with all the friends she hasn't seen in two decades, whilst also de I feel as if I've been on a roller coaster whilst reading The Last Laugh by Tracy Bloom .. highs and lows, happy and sad, and all at breakneck speed. Never a dull moment!A none-too-welcome health diagnosis sets Jenny on the path to recapture the best years of her lift and, with the help of her friend Maureen - who does frank and candid like no-one else - she goes about recreating her 25th birthday party and getting back in touch with all the friends she hasn't seen in two decades, whilst also deciding to turn the clock back for herself.Jenny is a fantastic, well-rounded and quite amazing character. Tackling life as most of us would like to think we would should we find ourselves in her shoes. There are no end of laugh-out-loud moments in this book, but keep the tissues handy for the moments which catch you entirely unawares. Very well written, completely believable and a novel where the reader feels a real affinity with the characters .. and dream of becoming a Maureen in their later years!I loved everything about this one, and I think the ending was perfection itself. Very clever indeed! Not only a book I thoroughly enjoyed but one I have no hesitation in recommending for those who enjoy a good story which is just that bit different from the norm.My thanks to publishers Bookouture for providing my copy via NetGalley. This is my honest, original and unbiased review.
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  • Fabulous Book Fiend
    January 1, 1970
    Another wonderful read from Tracy Bloom. This book has laughs and a great plot but most of all, this is what they mean when they say a book gives you all the feels! This book made me feel everything and yet those feelings are tied up with Jenny and her family and that is why I love a Tracy Bloom novel! Jenny is a great main character, she is recognisable as one of us or as one of our friends and so you invest in her and just want the best for her no matter what. She can be an incredibly frustrat Another wonderful read from Tracy Bloom. This book has laughs and a great plot but most of all, this is what they mean when they say a book gives you all the feels! This book made me feel everything and yet those feelings are tied up with Jenny and her family and that is why I love a Tracy Bloom novel! Jenny is a great main character, she is recognisable as one of us or as one of our friends and so you invest in her and just want the best for her no matter what. She can be an incredibly frustrating character to ride with but that is what makes you keep turning the pages in this novel. Jenny is also an incredibly inspirational character, she definitely made me want to channel my inner spice girl.As much as the characters in this novel are very recognisable. The storyline is also something which we hear about every single day, it could be happening to our friend, our neighbour or ourselves. But Tracy Bloom weaves the plot in such a clever way, you're entertained and emotionally driven throughout.The supporting characters in this novel range from the hilarious to the one you love to hate, always a winning formula. And although this book does deal with incredibly sensitive issues I still loved every moment of it and read it in practically one sitting. If you've never read a Tracy Bloom novel, this is a great place to start and if you have, I think you'll definitely agree with me that this is her best book yet!
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  • Sophie
    January 1, 1970
    Tracy Bloom is one author I have a bit of a hit or miss relationship with. I have read two of her books before, one of which I really enjoyed, the other I didn't like so much. However, as her writing is usually pretty hilarious, I wanted to give her another chance, which is why I picked up her new release. Like I said, her writing is usually hilarious so I was interested to see how she would take such a serious topic and make it laugh out loud funny.Now, don't get me wrong, this book was funny, Tracy Bloom is one author I have a bit of a hit or miss relationship with. I have read two of her books before, one of which I really enjoyed, the other I didn't like so much. However, as her writing is usually pretty hilarious, I wanted to give her another chance, which is why I picked up her new release. Like I said, her writing is usually hilarious so I was interested to see how she would take such a serious topic and make it laugh out loud funny.Now, don't get me wrong, this book was funny, but, as it turns out, it was not laugh out loud funny. Perhaps that was a bit much to ask of a book dealing with terminal illness and a husband having an affair. Tracy Bloom did a great job of mixing humour and serious topics, however some aspects of the book that I feel were meant to be humorous just seemed downright bizarre.In fact, much of this book seemed bizarre; sometimes in a good way, other times not so much. The plot is very unique. Never before have I read a book about a terminally ill woman finding out her husband is having an affair and deciding to deal with it all by throwing a party. It was all very strange and I found it hard to understand any of the reasoning behind many decisions Jenny makes. It all just seemed very irrational and a little bit crazy.Despite a rather crazy plot, the characters were pretty average. For me, Tracy Bloom tried too hard to make the characters, Jenny in particular, quirky and interesting and it didn't really work out. The only character I really enjoyed, who felt authentically quirky, was Maureen. Maureen is a truly great character who, despite being a little bit mad, was hilariously funny and really made the book for me.One thing I really liked about this book was that it featured a character with anxiety. Jenny's son really struggles with anxiety and this became quite a big aspect of the book. There were points throughout the book in which I really did not like the way he was being spoken to and about; however, this did improve as the book went on and I really liked how his part of the story wrapped up.Overall, this book was enjoyable but nothing particularly special. The plot was interesting, if at times difficult to fathom, and did have me laughing at times, despite the serious subject matter. The bland characters were somewhat disappointing but mad Maureen made up for it. While not my favourite of the Tracy Bloom books I have read, this has definitely encouraged me to give some of her other books a go.
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  • Donna Maguire
    January 1, 1970
    https://donnasbookblog.wordpress.com/...I love and adore Tracy’s books so this one was always going to be a hit with me! I was genuinely excited to get started and I have to say now I’ve finished it – I blooming loved it!!The story is great, I loved every page and flew through the book. So funny in places and touching where it needs to be – it really is an excellent piece of work and has been one of my top reads of the year so far!!Tracy is one of my favourite authors – another brilliant 5 star https://donnasbookblog.wordpress.com/...I love and adore Tracy’s books so this one was always going to be a hit with me! I was genuinely excited to get started and I have to say now I’ve finished it – I blooming loved it!!The story is great, I loved every page and flew through the book. So funny in places and touching where it needs to be – it really is an excellent piece of work and has been one of my top reads of the year so far!!Tracy is one of my favourite authors – another brilliant 5 star read for me!!
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