BlogHer Book Club: The Magic Room

by Kathy on December 29, 2011 · 8 comments

in BHBC, BlogHer, Books, Family, Inspiration, Love, Reviews

The Magic Room by Jeffrey Zaslow is my fourth BlogHer Book Club read and a truly extraordinary book. To say that I loved it, is an understatement.

Reading The Magic Room reminded me of watching two of my favorite documentary style television shows: 60 Minutes and Real Sports. I love the way the correspondents and producers on those programs tell stories. Likewise, Jeffrey Zaslow has a gift for drawing readers in and getting us to care about the characters he writes about, in this case women of all ages, shapes, sizes and backgrounds who have one thing in common: they are engaged to be married and are in the market for a wedding dress.

In The Magic Room Zaslow tells about the journeys to the alter of a number of brides-to-be with fascinating research mixed in about the history of marriage and wedding traditions. He talks about how both have evolved over the past century and what that has meant for the family who runs “Becker’s Bridal” shop in a small town called Fowler, MI, outside of Detroit, which has been in business for four generations. The bridal shop carries more gowns in stock than the town has residents!

I found that the description of the Becker family, especially how each generation has been torn as to whether or not to try to keep their business going in Fowler was reminiscent of the fictitious Bailey family, who ran the Bailey Building & Loan in Bedford Falls in my favorite movie, It’s a Wonderful Life.

A master storyteller, Zaslow had me hooked and in tears as I read his introduction to The Magic Room. I love his intention of writing a book for his three daughters, as a sort of “love letter” about his hopes and dreams for them, before they are of age to consider marrying and sharing their lives with another person someday. Reading this book was also very nostalgic for me, as it moved me to reflect on my own journey to the alter and my life since my husband Bob and I were married eleven years ago on September 23, 2000.

I highly recommend this book and am grateful for the opportunity to have been among the first to get to read it as part of the BlogHer Book Club! Please join our discussion over on the BlogHer Book Club page where you can share your thoughts and find out what others are saying about The Magic Room.

In the spirit of The Magic Room, I thought it would be fun to include a picture here of me in my bridal gown, in my parent’s living room, before the ceremony on Bob and my wedding day 11 years ago. So I will leave you with that.

If you have already read The Magic Room or decide to check it out in the future, I would love to know what you think of it.

Disclaimer: I received a free e-copy of this book to read for this review and to participate in the related BlogHer Book Club discussion. However, I was in no way encouraged to write a positive or negative review about The Magic Room.


{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 loribeth December 29, 2011 at 7:55 am

I will have to look for this one. I absolutely loved the last book he wrote, "The Girls from Ames." And I love that photo of you — gorgeous dress!!


2 Deborah December 29, 2011 at 9:45 am

That sounds like a really interesting book. I am always looking for new things to read. I like the decoration on the bottom of your dress! Beautiful picture.


3 HereWeGoAJen December 29, 2011 at 12:01 pm

I will have to get this one! It sounds really good.

And I looove this picture of you!


4 Meg March 23, 2012 at 12:41 am

Missed this post the first time round but saw your link to it today. I would like to read it. Could I borrow it if you didn’t get it on Kindle or loan it out already to a friend? If you did, I’ll try to borrow it on Kindle from the library–been having good luck with that lately. We have too many book so trying not buy new ones if I can help it.

P.S. You looked stunning in your wedding dress. That’s one of my favorite pics.
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5 Lori Lavender Luz November 13, 2012 at 5:09 pm

How did I miss this the first time? Maybe I dropped the ball during the holiday rush. My loss!

Sounds like a wonderful book for me to request from the library. The photo of you is GORGEOUS! (well, it’s you who is gorgeous).
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6 Esperanza November 13, 2012 at 11:19 pm

I have to admit, I wouldn’t think I’d like this book but now I’m intrigued. I think I might get it. Now to decide, to I get it on Kindle or Audiobook. Any recommendation?
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7 Justine November 17, 2012 at 12:30 pm

I hadn’t read this book, but what an interesting idea … to capture this moment in a woman’s life, as such a time of transition, uncertainty, self-reflection … and what an ideal way to develop an appreciation for narrative fiction! Thanks for pointing us back to this post! (I love the picture of you in your gown, too. You are stunning!)
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